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Capital cops in election mode

Ranchi police have started gearing up for Lok Sabha polls.

For, regular meetings to discuss security arrangements and strategic planning are being witnessed at the district police headquarters in the capital since Saturday.

A police officer revealed to The Telegraph that the exercise started with a meeting chaired by SSP Bhimsen Tuti where OCs of all the police stations across the district were present.

“The purpose of yesterday’s meeting was to assess the number of personnel required for the forthcoming election,” Tuti said, but added that it was a routine exercise.

Sources, however, said that specific instructions were given to the officers to categorise booths according to their sensitivity.

“Officers have been asked to visit all the booths in their area and identify their nature. They have been asked to categorise them as sensitive, supersensitive and normal polling booths,” an officer said, not willing to be named.

During the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, out of the 1,613 booths in Ranchi, 1,176 were declared supersensitive.

“Hence, the forthcoming election is being seen as a big challenge for the police officers who have been asked to leave no stone unturned to ensure foolproof security,” the officer added.

Another officer supported the fact. “With the 15th Lok Sabha nearing its end (in May), the men in uniform in addition to their regular law and order duty, are also devoting time in developing sources in political and non-political circles to get regular inputs and do proper strategic planning,” he added.

Divided in rural and urban pockets, Ranchi has around 20 lakh voters in six Assembly constituencies. Tamar and Bundu, which is a part of Ranchi Lok Sabha constituency, is under the influence of Maoists while the city is also considered unsafe .

In this situation, any exercise for tightening security by police holds significance.