Voters exhorted to exercise their rights without any fear
The Telangana State Election Commission has asserted that there is absolutely no chance of breach of secrecy of voting of any voter and exhorted the electors to exercise their voting rights without any fear.
The SEC averred that any attempt to breach the secrecy of voting would be thwarted and severest punishment would be given to such perpetrators. The police authorities concerned had been directed to initiate prompt action in the event of any such case coming to their notice.
The commission said secrecy of voting is the fundamental feature of all elections and the SEC made fool proof arrangements to prevent any breach of secrecy either on the day of poll or on the day of counting.
The ballot boxes would be stored in strong rooms with multi-layered security with total transparency during the interregnum too and there is no chance of breaching this security.
Section 212 of the Telangana Municipalities Act 2019 makes it an offence to cause any break in the secrecy of voting and anybody attempting to break the law would be sent to jail for three months with a provision of imposition of fine too.
The Indian Penal Code Section 171C read with Section 171F imposes one-year jail term to anybody exerting or attempting to exert undue influence/interference with the free exercise of any electoral rights, the SEC added.
Meanwhile, the Commission had ordered the officials concerned to declare a local holiday on the polling day in the areas which were going to polls on January 22 and January 24. The Labour Department has been asked to ensure that a paid holiday is observed for shops and establishments on the polling day in the areas where the elections had been notified.
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