Hyderabad: Chief Electoral Officer of Telangana Dr. Rajat Kumar on Saturday informed that elaborate security arrangements have been made at strong rooms containing EVMs till the day of counting of May 23.
Strong rooms containing EVMs will be guarded round the clock by a three-tier perimeter comprising State Armed Police and Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) personnel. The first tier, which is the innermost perimeter, will be manned round the clock by a section of CAPF.
The second tier will be manned by a section of the state armed police force. The third tier, which is the outermost perimeter, will be guarded by a section of the district executive force.
Strong rooms will have a double-lock system. One key will be kept with the District Election Officer and the second key will be kept with the Returning Officer concerned. The minimum strength of security at each strong room containing polled EVMs will be one platoon.
Two cordons of security will be maintained round the clock at strong rooms containing polled EVMs with the inner cordon manned by the Central Police Force and the outer cordon manned by the state armed police force.
All strong rooms will be guarded by the CAPF round the clock. Control-rooms will be set up adjacent to strong rooms and will operate round the clock.
A gazette officer along with a police officer will be on duty round the clock to monitor security arrangements at each strong room. Strong rooms will have only one door and no other door. Adequate number of fire-extinguishers will be arranged at each strong room.
No person will be allowed to enter the inner perimeter of security at strong rooms without adhering to the following protocol: Entry in the log-book maintained by the CAPF recording the date, time, duration, purpose, name and designation of the person, such as the Observer, DEO, SP, candidates from political parties and their agents, who has crossed the second security perimeter. Video cameras will be provided to CAPF contingents at all strong rooms to record all visits made by such visitors.
The EVMs received been classified in three categories. EVMs containing votes polled at polling stations at the end of the poll have been placed in Category A.
They will be stored in the strong room after following due procedure. All EVMs which become defective after some votes are recorded in them will be Category B and they will be stored separately, but in the same strong room, with the Category-A EVMs.
Un-Polled EVMs will be in Category C. EVMs which become defective before the commencement of voting and are replaced. They will be kept in a separate room other than the strong room and returned to the concerned manufacturer with due protocol.
The unused EVMs will be in Category D. They are kept in sectoral, zonal and area-magistrate reserves and they will be stored in a separate room other than the strong room. (INN)