With election fever hitting the University of Hyderabad hard, the Election Commission (EC) headed by Dr. Sanjay Subodh, the Returning Officer for this year’s elections is geared for what is to come in the next few days. The University will be the first institution to implement the ‘None Of The Above’ (NOTA) option for voters who do not want to choose any of nominees.

As Election Day draws near, the EC has already prepared a list of 12 polling booths across the University, specifying the Centres and courses that will be casting their vote at each booth. “Besides the security personnel that will deployed, each booth will have one faculty observer and three polling officials. Party agents will not be allowed within 100 meters of the booth,” said the Returning Officer.

The EC for the Student Union election’s 2013 is constituted only of faculty members, which is atypical as students usually form the commission. “I think of my position of Returning Officer as a responsibility. Ideally, the elections should be conducted by the students. That is the true democratic process,” was Dr. Subodh’s response to the formation of the EC and on his post as Returning Officer. He added that the students needed a voice of their own and the University also wanted a student representative.

In order to avoid any controversies and any chance of foul play on the counting day, a faculty observer has been instituted for each post in addition to student representatives and party agents. A grievance committee has also been set up to settle disputes that might arise during counting.

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