Bhubaneswar: The Election Commission (EC) has asked the Odisha government to seal its border with the poll-bound Chhattisgarh in order to ensure free and fair elections.
Assembly elections in Chhattisgarh will be held in two phases – on November 12 and 20.
“The State government has been told to seal its border with Chhattisgarh in order to ensure free and fair elections in that state,” Odisha’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar said on Wednesday.
The Odisha government has also asked authorities of eight districts bordering Chhattisgarh to go for frisking in border areas and keep an eye on the movement of Maoists and people carrying liquor, cash and other materials.
These eight border districts are Sundergarh, Jharsuguda, Bargarh, Nuapada, Nabarangpur, Malkangiri, Kalahandi and Koraput.
On November 5, Chief Election Commissioner OP Rawat and the two election commissioners addressed senior Odisha government officials in a video conference, which was attended by district magistrates of these eight districts.
The Odisha government had repeatedly urged the ministry of home affairs for two more battalions of Central armed police forces to seal the border zones, but no such step had so far been taken, sources in the Odisha Police said.