MAPUSA: North Goa Congress President, Vijay Bhike expressed concern over the rising Covid-1 numbers in the state and called on the Election Commission of India to think outside the box to ensure that the polls are conducted in a safe and secure manner in Goa that also ensures a level playing field for all political parties in the state.
    Pointing out that the third wave in only just beginning in Goa and the rest of the country, the North Goa Congress leader feared the worst is yet to come and pointed to the situation in the US and the UK, where he said the situation has gotten so bad that everyone is falling sick at the same time that has forced several establishments including essential establishments to close after all their employees called in sick at the same time.
    “What’s happening in the UK and the US should not be repeated here. Imagine a situation where election officials or the entire leadership of a political party contracts Covid or an entire battalion of police contracts Covid. There will be no one left to even carry out essential services,” North Goa Congress President Vijay Bhike said in a press note released on Sunday.
    “Questions remain on whether the state administration and election authorities are adequately geared up and prepared to ensure that with the rising Covid numbers that is likely to peak at the time of elections. Does the election commission plan to hold polls at a time when everyone is quarantining at home having been infected with Covid,” Bhike asked.
    “While the election Commission has announced some measures, we believe that the ECI needs to think outside the box and come up with some alternative solutions to the electoral process. While the Election Commission has urged political parties to campaign in the digital mode the voting process itself has not been digitized leaving the voters in general vulnerable,” Bhike said.
    “Failure to take adequate precautions will result in a lower voter turnout that will throw into question the credibility of elections and unless we act fast lives are going to be at stake,” he added

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