Home INDIA & BEYOND Special observers, NOTA new features this election

Special observers, NOTA new features this election

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New Delhi, March 5 :

The Election Commission will for the first time deploy special observers to oversee the management of the electoral process at the field level for the Lok Sabha polls.Election Symbols

The central awareness observers will oversee the efficient and effective management of the electoral process at the field level, mainly in respect of voter awareness and facilitation, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) V.S. Sampath said at a press conference here held to announce the poll dates Wednesday.

“Awareness observers will be deployed in two phases of seven days each and shall observe the intervention undertaken by the election machinery to bridge the gap in people’s participation in the electoral process particularly with regard to voter turnout,” he said.

The observers will also monitor the various media related aspects and the mechanism at district levels on checking the problem of paid news.

Voters will, for the first time, be able to exercise the “None of the Above” (NOTA) option for candidates in the Lok Sabha polls, the Election Commission said Wednesday.

Chief Election Commissioner V.S. Sampath said the entire election will be held using electronic voting machines (EVMs), and that the NOTA option will also be provided.

“The 2014 Lok Sabha polls shall be held with EVMs,” he said, adding that appropriate instructions will be issued regarding the NOTA facility.

The option was first made available in the Novermber-December assembly polls in five states last year.

The Lok Sabha elections will involve a staggering 814 million voters, an increase of some 100 million from 2009, and a sharp rise from the 176 million in the first parliamentary polls of 1952.

(IANS)