Security arrangements in place for Khonsa West bye-poll

KHONSA, Oct 5: The Tirap district administration held a ‘preparedness coordination meeting’ here on Saturday, ahead of the bye-election to the Khonsa West assembly constituency on 21 October.
Addressing the candidates, election observers, HoDs, flying squads and security personnel, Tirap SP Kardak Riba informed that adequate security forces, including 12 companies of paramilitary, IRBn and state police personnel, under the supervision of two SPs, will be assisting him during the election process.
“Ten deputy SPs, 16 inspectors, and 26 sub-inspectors, besides police personnel, have been deployed in different locations to ensure free and fair conduct of the bye-election,” he said.
The SP suggested that “both candidates should respect each other and be part of a free and fair election.”
EAC Hakresha Kri informed that the flying squads have seized 14 cases of foreign liquor, Rs 2,05,000, knives, etc, from different locations.
He, however, assured that preparations for the bye-election are being carried out “smoothly” and rounds of training have been imparted to the officers and officials assigned for election duties.
DC PN Thungon urged both the candidates and their supporters to cooperate with the administration, the police and the polling teams.
He commended the police, the paramilitary forces, the IRBn and other security personnel deployed for the bye-election, besides the election observer and the expenditure observer “for working hard to ensure peaceful conduct of the bye-election in Khonsa West.”
Thungon also urged the power (electrical) and the PHE&WS departments to ensure that the 23 polling booths have adequate electricity and water supply.
The meeting was attended by independent candidates Azet Homtok and Chakat Aboh, their supporters, HoDs, and the election and expenditure observers.
The Khonsa West seat had fallen vacant after the killing of National People’s Party candidate Tirong Aboh, who won the seat posthumously when the result was declared.
Aboh and 10 others, including his 20-year-old son, were killed by suspected NSCN (IM) militants on 21 May near the 12 Mile area here. He later won the seat by 1055 votes, defeating the BJP’s Phawang Lowang. (With DIPRO inputs)