As part of its preparations for the coming Lok Sabha polls, the Election Commission has directed Chief Electoral Officers of all states to provide minimum basic facilities at all polling stations.
The Commission has also sought a review of all polling stations by District Electoral Officers by February 5 and the DEOs should hold a meeting with representatives of political parties by February 15. They should send such reports tio CEOs by February 17 and the compiled report of polling station review should be sent to the EC by February 20.
Among the minimum basic facilities that the EC has sought at various polling stations include setting up of a help desk, provision of a ramp, drinking water, adequate furniture, proper lighting and signage, besides toilet and first-aid kits and health infrastructure.
The poll body has asked the DEOs to also conduct physical inspection of polling stations and carry out a videography of the same to ensure they are in proper shape. The EC has also asked for providing a covered shelter at the polling station for voter facilitation and put in place a proper queue management measures to avoid long queues.
It has also asked them for preparation of standardised voting compartments at polling station to ensure secrecy of voting, which should made of cardboard and not of a cloth. The multi-phased Lok Sabha elections are likely to be held in April and announced by the end of February or early March, in which a total of 81 crore electorate will participate and over 1 crore poll personnel will be on duty.