Conducting the upcoming Assembly elections in Bihar is likely to be a 'more than usual' expensive affair due to certain challenges and difficulties that have emerged following the coronavirus-triggered crisis across the globe.
To ensure social distancing and other necessary precautionary measures, over one lakh personnel would be pressed into election duties -- mainly to look out for physical distancing among the people that would turn up to exercise franchise.
The term of the Bihar Legislative Assembly expires in November and it is believed that elections will be held on time if everything goes well. Sources said the Election Commission (EC) is considering all the challenges, and poll preparations are being constantly reviewed.
The EC has made it clear that this time, only 1,000 voters will vote at a particular polling station. Therefore, it has been decided to set up additional polling booths.
Sources in the Election Commission told IANS that due to the proposed formula of allowing 1,000 voters at a polling centre, preparations are underway to come up with around 34,000 additional polling centres.
Thus, elections will be held in around 1,06,000 polling centres in Bihar.
Additional polling personnel will also be appointed once those centres become functional. In such a situation, the Commission has estimated that at least 1,08,000 employees will have to be appointed at 34,000 additional centres.
EC sources said that vehicles are also needed for the movement of additional staff to those additional polling stations.
Besides, extra resources will have to be arranged for the election.
The additional employees will also have to be paid an allowance.
Thus, the expenditure in the Assembly polls will be more this time compared to the previous elections.