Tamil Nadu

Polling passes off peacefully in Vellore

Among Assembly segments, turnout was lowest in Vellore and highest in KV Kuppam

The election to the Vellore Parliamentary constituency passed off peacefully amid tight police security on Monday. The average polling recorded was 72.62% after polls closed at 6 p.m., according to District Election Officer-cum-Collector A. Shanmuga Sundram.

There were reports of VVPAT units malfunctioning in some places, and there were some cases of problems with EVMs and Control Units. Faulty machines were replaced immediately and polling continued, the DEO said.

Mr. Sundram received first-time voters with bouquets at a polling station in Allapuram in Vellore town. He appealed to the voters to exercise their franchise. "All the people should cast their vote. Booth slips are not mandatory; any of the documents authorised by EC can be shown for casting votes," he said.

He said that though reports had been received at Vaniyambadi about money distribution by two persons of a particular party, there was no seizure of cash, and no one had registered any complaint in this regard.

Tension gripped Periapettai in Vaniyambadi when DMK cadre cornered two men from Chennai over an alleged attempt to distribute money to voters. It was said that they were locked inside a house, and the police, on receiving information, rescued them. They were let off with a stern warning.

Polling started as scheduled at many booths. Polling was held at booths spread across six Assembly segments — Anaikattu, Vellore, KV Kuppam, Gudiyatham, Ambur and Vaniyambadi. The polling started on a dull note but picked up pace as the day progressed.

Among the Assembly segments, Vellore registered the lowest turnout of 67.05%. KV Kuppam registered the highest voter turnout of 82.62%. The turnout was 75.04% in Anaikattu, 68.90% in Gudiyatham, 73.22% in Vaniyambadi and 70.43% in Ambur.

EVM glitch

EVMs in three of the 1,553 polling booths suffered glitches, but the issues were rectified shortly after to commence voting. There were reports of a delay in commencement of polling at Holy Cross Matriculation School, Sathuvachari, Vellore, where officials were unable to complete mock polling. Polling started at 7.45 a.m. in the three booths located there.

As many as 28 candidates are seeking a mandate in Vellore, including A.C. Shanmugam of the AIADMK front, DMK candidate D.M. Kathir Anand and S. Deepalakshmi of the Naam Tamizhar Katchi.

The police had made elaborate security arrangements for ensuring the smooth conduct of polling, deploying a contingent of 6,500 personnel, including those of the Central Reserve Police Force and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force. Inspector General of Police P. Nagarajan and DIG - Vellore N. Kamini supervised the security arrangements. SPs, including Pravesh Kumar and Sibi Chakravarthi, worked on ensuring security for the voters as well as officials and government properties.

The EVMs, Control Units and VVPAT equipment would be sent to Ranipet Engineering College and Polytechnic College in Walajah, and would be kept under tight police security till August 9 for the counting of votes.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 10:17:38 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/polling-passes-off-peacefully-in-vellore/article28827994.ece

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