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Polls: Delhi police face staff crunch

March 17, 2009 17:00 IST

The Delhi Police, with over 60,000 personnel, will be short of nearly 12,000 men for carrying out poll-related duties during the Lok Sabha elections scheduled here for May 7.

Such a large shortfall will be there even after taking into consideration the additional paramilitary forces that will be deployed during the elections, according to a senior Delhi police official.

"There is a shortage of about 12,000 personnel for poll-related duties despite the availability of paramilitary forces. The central forces move in sections which are groups of eight personnel. These sections cannot be broken up, hence, we cannot use them for securing booths where fewer men are needed," the official said on condition of anonymity.

During the Assembly elections last year, Delhi Police had sought the help of 12,000 home guards from neighbouring Haryana and Uttar Pradesh governments. This time, there is little chance of this happening because elections are being held in these states as well, the official said.

He said the national capital has more than 12,000 polling booths, each guarded by three Delhi Police personnel.

"But this time, for each booth we need one more person, which makes a shortage of about 12,000 men. Since sections of paramilitary force cannot be broken up we have to use them for duties other than guarding booths," he said.

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