An exclusive election control room to function at Collectorate

A total of 13,000 staff would be on election duty in Madurai district for the general elections to the 16th Lok Sabha, Madurai Collector and Returning Officer of Madurai Parliamentary Constituency L. Subramanian said here on Wednesday.

Speaking to reporters, he said with the Election Commission of India having announced the election schedule, model code of conduct had come into force, and the weekly public grievance redressal meetings, farmers’ grievance day meetings, reviews of development works, distribution of freebies and the annual government-sponsored Chithirai exhibition would be suspended.

The district has 10 Assembly segments – Melur, Madurai East, Madurai North, Madurai South, Madurai West, Madurai Central, Tirumangalam, Tirupparankundram, Sholavandan and Usilampatti. The Madurai Lok Sabha constituency comprises of six Assembly segments – Melur, Madurai East, Madurai North, Madurai South, Madurai West and Madurai Central.

Tirumangalam and Tirupparankundram segments came under the Virudhunagar Lok Sabha constituency, while Sholavandan and Usilampatti Assembly segments were covered under the Theni Lok Sabha constituency.

There were 2,560 polling stations at 1,508 places in the district with a voter population of 23.61 lakh – 11.75 lakh men and 11.86 lakh women. In Madurai Lok Sabha constituency, there were 1,468 polling stations. For the benefit of the voters, an exclusive election control room would be functioning at the Collectorate with a toll-free number 1800 425 7027 with four hunting lines: 0452-2521511, 2521577, 2521599 and 2521677, and a mobile number: 8903831137, Dr.Subramanian said. Any information pertaining to the conduct of the election could be passed on to the officials, he added.

Asked about the number and categorisation of sensitive booths, he said booths, which had polled over 75 per cent in the past and those identified as communally or politically vibrant would be marked as sensitive.

Different teams would be engaged in the conduct of the election, he said, adding a flying squad, static surveillance team, micro observers and video teams would cover all the booths. While the polling was scheduled for April 24, counting of votes would be done on May 16, officials said.

The schedule would not affect the Meenakshi Thirukalyanam which would be organised on May 10 and the entry of Lord Kallazhagar into the Vaigai river on May 14, they added.