Gujarat wants more forces for poll duty

April 9th, 2009 - 4:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Gandhinagar, April 9 (IANS) Gujarat has sought more paramilitary forces for poll duty, pointing out that the state has been on the terror map, an official said here Thursday.
“As of now, the central government has allotted 100 companies of paramilitary forces for poll duty in Gujarat against the state government’s demand for 375 companies considering that Gujarat is a potential terrorist target,” the senior home department official told IANS.

Gujarat goes to polls April 30.

The Gujarat police department has a strength of 50,000 including officers and special squads like commandos, the border wing and bomb disposal units, but the number would be insufficient for poll duties and the state has conveyed this concern to the central home ministry, the official added.

Considering the spread of Gujarat with many polling centres along its 1,600-km coastline, 100 paramilitary companies would not be sufficient, said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

While the army units stationed in Gujarat can take care of emergencies during polling, the state government wants more paramilitary forces to ensure safety of the voters, candidates and the polling staff, the official said.

The state would also require more forces in the communally sensitive areas, the official said.

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