Kathmandu, May 3

The Metropolitan Police Office has beefed up security in Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur for the first phase of local level elections scheduled for May 14.

According to the Metropolitan Police Office, it has deployed as many as 6,980 police personnel and 4,268 temporary cops with major focus on sensitive areas to ensure that voting takes place in a free and fair manner at all polling centers designated by the Election Commission.

Police have anticipated incidents of poll violence when political parties are busy campaigning for elections.

Acting Police Commissioner Deputy Inspector General Bam Bahadur Bhandari summoned security officers of all ranges, circles and sectors and chalked out a detailed security plan yesterday.

Bhandari directed them to make the mobilisation of Control Room Vehicles more effective and results-oriented. Control Room Vehicles equipped with Global Positioning System have been deployed round-the-clock in 72 places of the Valley which DIG Bhandari said would act as a first responder if there is any untoward incident.

The Global Positioning System tracking devices help the police control room keep real-time tab on the Control Room Vehicles and track patrolling.

Real-time tracking system also makes on-duty cops more accountable and responsible.

Officials stationed at the control room will be able to locate the Control Room Vehicles on computer screen and instruct them to reach the specified location as part of reponse to any untoward incident.

According to the Metropolitan Police Office, three-tier security arrangements will be put in place to ensure fool-proof security in and around polling and vote counting centres.

Nepal Police personnel and temporary cops will be deployed inside the polling centres while Armed Police Force and Nepali Army will look into the second and outermost ring respectively.

Arrangements of micro-observers and additional security forces have also been made for polls.

Officials said there was no specific information that suggested a threat to elections, but added that security personnel would remain very vigilant throughout the country to ensure free, fair and peaceful elections.