Staff Reporter

February 11 last day to check for names in voters' list

CHENNAI: It could be the last opportunity to check for your names in the electoral rolls ahead of the Assembly elections. And you have time till February 11 to make your claims or objections.

The Chennai Corporation on Friday released the draft electoral rolls for the city's 14 Assembly constituencies. Copies of the list will be available at all polling booths, Corporation zonal offices and post offices over the next two weeks. During the time, designated electoral officers will accept requests for additions, deletions and transfer of names. The final rolls will be published on February 27 after verifying the voters' submissions.

Commissioner M.P.Vijayakumar, who released the rolls and handed over copies to representatives of political parties, said: "We request all voters to help us prepare a error-free list ahead of the elections. It will be in everybody's interests to check them up now rather than complain on the election day that their names are missing."

Nearly 2.7 lakh residents are listed in the draft rolls. More than 62,000 deletions have been effected after last year's intensive revisions.

On Election Commission recommendations, the number of polling stations was increased from 2,344 to 2,468 in the city, after fixing a maximum of 1,200 voters per polling station.

The figures for constituency-wise break-up of voters were not available.

Mr.Vijayakumar said unlike previous draft rolls, the present one was a unified draft roll that did not have a supplementary list for additions and deletions. It would make verification easier.

Challenge to workers

Corporation officials said it had been a challenging task to prepare an `error-free' electoral roll in the wake of the serious problems faced across the city during the previous parliamentary elections.

"We found that errors crept in at the time of entry of data. This time, we have cross verified the electronic list against the official's handwritten manuscript based on door-to-door verification.

Some errors might have still crept in but we hope the residents will respond now and help us," the officials said.

The election officials categorically told the political parties that bulk applications would not be accepted.

The Corporation will soon start training its staff on conduct of elections.

They have already started overhauling the 6,500 electronic voting machines.

Officials expect elections to be in May and have started making arrangements.