Mrunal Manmay Dash

An eight-member team of the Election Commission of India (ECI) led by Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar arrived in Bhubaneswar on Thursday night on a three-day visit to Odisha.

His visit is a part of the exercise to assess and review the state’s preparedness for the upcoming general elections 2024.

Led by Rajiv Kumar, the team comprises Deputy Commissioner Arun Goel, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Dharmender Sharma, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Nitesh Kumar Vyas, and others.

Kumar’s Friday schedule includes discussions with several regional and National political parties.

Over the next two days, the ECI team will review the poll preparedness of District Election Officers (DEOs), Superintendents of Police (SPs), enforcement agencies, State Nodal officers, and senior officials of Odisha for the ensuing general elections.

Besides, the team will take stock of the status of electronic voting machines (EVMs) and booth-level preparedness for the simultaneous polls.

It is learnt that the ECI has planned to install cameras at around 60 per cent booths in Odisha as part of measures to maintain law and order during elections. Besides, it has decided to take steps for surveillance through drones in densely populated areas of the state.

The Election Commission (EC) has resumed its review of states' preparedness for the Lok Sabha polls with the visit to Odisha. It will complete the process in Jammu and Kashmir on March 13, sources said.

In January, the Commission reviewed the preparations in Andhra Pradesh, where Lok Sabha and assembly polls will be held together.