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CEC reviews LS poll preparations in UP

March 05, 2009 22:23 IST

Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalswami, who is currently visiting Uttar Pradesh to review the poll preparedness in the state, on Thursday assured that action will be taken against certain bureaucrats and top policemen, who are reportedly acting in a 'partisan' manner.

"We will study these complaints and then make our own inquiries before initiating any action," he informed mediapersons after holding meetings with district magistrates , district police chiefs and other senior poll related functionaries .

Accompanied by two election commissioners -- Naveen Chawla and S Y Quraishi -- Gopalswami arrived in Lucknow on Wednesday evening on a two-day visit. The team will also travel to Patna to take stock of the poll preparations in Bihar.

India's most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, has as many as 80 parliamentary constituencies. The state will go to poll in five phases, during which 11.62 crore voters will exercise their franchise at 1,28,112 polling stations.

The complaints made by the Congress and the Bhartaiya Janata Party tried to draw the attention of the CEC to "violation of the election code of conduct by the state government" and accused the state machinery of turning into a  'tool' of the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party.

The Samajwadi Party has also demanded the removal of some top officials for allegedly working for the BSP.

The CEC assured that he will act on these complaints 'very soon'.

Urging officials to remain impartial and objective, he told them, "Keep your eyes and ears open".

Referring to the arrangements, he said, "While most other arrangements will remain the same, we will have at least one telecommunication facility to ensure prompt and direct connectivity."

Gopalaswami added, "We have taken some special measures to curb the cross-border movement of people that has caused trouble in the past."

"Polling in all border areas will now be held simultaneously. Areas in Bihar bordering Eastern UP will go to polls together, while areas in southern UP will go to polls with bordering areas in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh and western UP would be synchronised with parts of Haryana and Rajasthan," he explained.

Asked whether certain areas would be identified as 'hyper-sensitive' or 'sensitive', he said, "We will not go by past history of a particular place, as it is not necessary that a particular place be labeled as 'sensitive' on account of a specific incident years or decades ago."

Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow