‘SEC too concerned about the well-being of employees’
Andhra Pradesh State Election Commission (SEC), taking note of the apprehensions aired by the government employees with regard to conduct of elections to local bodies in view of the COVID pandemic, has stated that it is concerned about the well-being of the staff.
In a statement on Sunday, State Election Commissioner Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar said that the commission on its own has always been concerned about the well-being of poll staff. Keeping this in mind, the SEC has suggested that the poll staff deployed be provided with quality PPE suits, face shields, gloves and disinfectants in accordance with COVID safety standards at par with other States by the State Health Department which may also impart safety-related training. Further, the commission suggested consideration of including the poll staff under priority immunisation programme as a special case. This would be a confidence building measure, he said.
Mr. Ramesh Kumar said that the issue was also emphasised during the discussion with Chief Secretary Adityanath Das and Health Secretary Anil Singhal on January 8. The above measures highlighted would address the genuine apprehensions. Further suggestions can also be made in the training sessions, he said.
The Commissioner said that the political parties, the important stakeholders holders, were in touch with the commission continuously. They have spoken in their wisdom in favour of gram panchayat elections.
“The gram panchayat elections are non-party based polls and will provide much-needed social leadership as well as facilitate the release of finance commission funds which is conditional to holding of timely elections. In addition to this, there is constitutional obligation for holding elections,” he said adding,"We are not alone in the discharge of the constitutional obligation. AP Civil Services have impressive track record in raising up to serious challenges time and again like natural calamities and time-bound processes like elections in the past. Andhra Pradesh is second to none."
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