DMK urges EC to insist only on one dose of vaccine, withdraw order mandating PPE kits for counting agents

DMK's organisation secretary RS Bharathi said that wearing PE kits in the scorching heat for 14 to 16 hours was practically not possible for the counting agents

Press Trust of India April 30, 2021 15:00:05 IST
DMK urges EC to insist only on one dose of vaccine, withdraw order mandating PPE kits for counting agents

Chennai: The DMK on Thursday requested the Election Commission to insist only on one dose of COVID-19 vaccination for candidates, counting agents and dispense with a direction that agents should wear Personal Protective Equipment kits in centres on 2 May, the day of vote counting.

"It is not known whether one dose of vaccination or two doses of vaccination is required. It is impossible to have the second dose of vaccination, without waiting for a period of 4 to 8 weeks from the date of having the first dose," the DMK said in a representation to the EC.

There was 'great scarcity' in getting the vaccine doses in mofussil areas and insisting on candidates to have two doses is a 'practical difficulty,' the party's organisation secretary, RS Bharathi said.

Also, it was not known whether the results of the RT-PCR test should have been obtained "48 hours or 72 hours" before the commencement of the vote-counting process, he said quoting the poll panel's guidelines.

Citing an EC direction that counting agents should wear PPE kits, Bharathi, also a Rajya Sabha MP, said wearing such kits in scorching heat for 14 to 16 hours was practically not possible.

The party is committed to following the EC directives to see that the counting process is safe, he said, adding, however, "it is our duty to point out practical difficulties which may be a hindrance to having peaceful and expeditious counting process."

"Hence, we request you to kindly give clarifications(on RT-PCR test reports) and to insist only on one dose of vaccination and to dispense with the direction regarding wearing of PPE kits by the counting agents."

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