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 May 2, 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 4 to 8 weeks from the date of having 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, R S Bharathi said.
Also, it was not known whether results of 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.”