154 APF units in place for polls

Kathmandu, June 13:

The Home Ministry has established 154 Armed Police Force (APF) units throughout the country in a run up to the constituent assembly elections.

“APF personnel have been deployed in the 205 constituencies of the country currently. We will re-arrange the deployment and plan more units after the government finalises the exact number of constituencies,” said Ek Mani Nepal, the chief of the Peace and Security Section at the ministry. He said the government is working on a detailed plan to maintain security during the CA elections.

Spokesperson of the APF, SSP Bishma Kanta Aryal, said the force has already set up units in all the district headquarters and some election constituencies. “We will set up one unit in each constituency,” he said.

According to Aryal, a unit includes 75 personnel headed by a DSP in the district headquarters and 50 personnel headed by an inspector in each constituency in the Tarai districts.

“However, district headquarters in other parts of the country will have a unit comprising 50 personnel and each constituency will have a unit of 35 personnel,” he added.

“Election security means flooding the areas with security personnel. Forces will secure election commission offices, ballot boxes and polling booths,” Nepal told this daily.

Nepal Police on the other hand has not set up a single unit for the elections. “Re-establishment of displaced police posts and increasing the number of police offices in the country will be enough for the elections,” SSP Shushil Bar Singh Thapa, spokesperson of the Nepal Police, said.

According to the Home Ministry, 1,271 police posts were displaced during the decade-long insurgency, of which, 1,100 have been re-established. A total of 115 police offices were displaced in the Tarai region due to the Madheshi movement. According to the ministry, each police unit now has at least 11 personnel headed by an Assistant-Sub Inspector.

“Earlier, a head constable headed a group of five personnel in a police unit,” the ministry official added.