Campaign activities are underway in the Bodoland Territorial Region of Assam State, as of December 3, ahead of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) elections. Voting will take place on Dec. 7 in the Baksa and Udalguri districts, and Dec. 10 in the Chirang and Kokrajhar districts. Officials may utilize intervening days for repolling. Polling will take place 0730-1630 (local time) at centers such as public schools and other government buildings. Officials will announce results from Dec. 12 onwards. Rallies and other political events could prompt localized transport disruptions. Security forces will likely deploy in the lead-up to and during the elections due to concerns about political violence, as well as the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Clashes between supporters of rival parties are possible ahead of the vote. Minor bombings, acts of intimidation, and attacks on political party offices cannot be ruled out.
Security disturbances and protests are possible in the aftermath of the election, especially if there are widespread allegations of irregularities. Protest actions may also include shutdown strikes, which could prompt business and transport disruptions. Supporters of political parties may stage demonstrations before, during, and after the polls. Clashes between rival political groups are not uncommon in the region.
Security personnel will deploy to maintain law and order in the run-up to, during, and immediately after the vote. Authorities will intensify random searches of vehicles and individuals during the election period. Tight security is certain around sensitive sites such as political party offices, government buildings, voting stations, public markets, and transport hubs. Enhanced security measures like the imposition of curfews and suspension of telecommunication services are possible in case of significant violence.
Transport disruptions are likely as voters reach and leave polling stations. Officials usually impose localized transport restrictions such as road closures, and traffic diversions. Authorities typically declare local holidays on election dates, which could prompt business disruptions in the vicinity. The region is approximately 75 km (47 miles) north-northwest of Guwahati.
Avoid all protests due to the possibility of clashes. If violence breaks out, leave the area and take shelter in a secure building. Confirm business appointments, transport reservations, and road status before traveling in polling areas through Dec. 13. Allow additional travel time to reach destinations in affected areas. Monitor trusted local sources for protest details, as organizers are unlikely to announce them in advance. Heed all instructions of security personnel.
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