Acknowledging the role played by Central and state police forces in conduct of polls, the Election Commission today announced that an honorarium will be paid to the personnel deployed on election duty.
“The deployment of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) and State Armed Police (SAP) during the poll period has become an integral part of the overall security management and plays a crucial and irreplaceable role in securing free, fair, peaceful and participative elections,” the Commission said.
“Fully acknowledging” the arduous and sensitive nature of the duties performed by these personnel during election period, often in diverse and difficult terrain, facing multiple threats and challenges continuously for periods extending upto two months, the EC said they will be paid honorarium for the performance of “this special duty”.
It will be also applicable for by-elections also.
The officers and men of central forces command respect and inspire confidence amongst the public and the various stakeholders in the election process.
The rates of honorarium ranges from a minimum amount of Rs 2500 for officers, Rs 2000 for subordinate officers and Rs 1500 for Other Ranks for any election duty which is of 15 days or less. If the duty period exceeds 15 days, there is a sanctioned enhancement of Rs 1250, Rs 1000 and Rs 750 per additional week for the three categories respectively, the Commission said.
However, the maximum honorarium permissible to a personnel shall not exceed the total pay of one month of the officer/personnel concerned.
In case of Lok Sabha polls, the expenditure of the honorarium amount will be borne by the Central government, while in cases of assembly polls, it will be borne by the respective state governments.
In case of simultaneous election, the expenditure will be shared between the Central and state government on a 50:50 basis.
“This order and rates of honorarium shall come into force prospectively and will have no retrospective effect,” the poll watchdog clarified.
There had been a long-pending demand of Central and state forces that their role in elections be recognised in the form of honorarium as it gives an incentive to personnel.