Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad on Thursday announced that the civic body would provide ambulance as well as Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits to COVID-19 patients who wish to cast their votes during the forthcoming bye-polls in the Rajarajeshwari Nagar (RR Nagar) Assembly seat .RR Nagar and Sira in Tumukuru are facing bye-polls on November 3.
Speaking to media persons after presiding over a meeting of officials overseeing the poll preparations in RR Nagar in Bengaluru, Manjunath Prasad said, "We will take every precautionary step to allow even COVID-19 patients to cast their votes. It is their fundamental right. We will call them and if any of these patients express their willingness to cast their votes, we will ferry them in an ambulance to the respective polling stations to allow them to exercise their franchise."
Prasad, who is also the returning officer for RR Nagar, said that there are 1,177 COVID-19 patients registered in this constituency in the last 17 days. "RR Nagar has nine wards and we will be stationing 10 ambulances in each ward," he said. In response to a question, the Commissioner said that the BBMP would take every possible measure, such as sanitisation of the entire booth, during the polls.
"We are taking steps to call all those who will test positive from Thursday onwards till November 2 evening. These patients will receive calls from the control room and if they desire, we will pick them up," he said.
Answering a question, Manjunath Prasad said that the COVID-19 patients will be ferried in ambulances between 5 pm and 6 pm, the last hour of polling, to avoid any human contact.
The commissioner said the BBMP would also provide a right-hand glove to all the voters who come to vote and an indelible ink mark will be put on the middle finger of the left hand.
"RR Nagar has 4.62 lakh voters and this time we will have three exclusively dedicated queues for men, women and physically challenged persons. In every booth COVID-19 SOPs will be strictly adhered to," he said.