Randomisation of poll equipment soon

CEO Rajat Kumar explaining the working of EVMs and VVPATs.File photo

CEO Rajat Kumar explaining the working of EVMs and VVPATs.File photo  

With the date for notification of forthcoming elections to the Legislative Assembly, November 12, approaching fast, the State election authorities have intensified exercise on randomisation of the election equipment - electronic voting machines and verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines.

The first level of randomisation will involve distribution of machines selected in groups to the respective districts.

Dispatch process

Thereafter, the respective district Collectors would take up randomisation of the machines they had received for dispatching them to the constituencies in their respective jurisdictions.

This will be followed by polling station wise randomisation of machines at the respective police stations in the last phase.

The election authorities will incorporate the details of the ballot paper pertaining to that specific constituency with the names of contesting candidates, their parties and symbols of the respective parties at this stage of randomisation.

Checks complete

The State was sanctioned 52,100 ballot units, 41,000 control units and 44,000 VVPATs and first-level checks have been completed for almost all the machines. Of these, error rate in the VVPAT machines was found to be 8.08% while it was pegged at 2.02% in respect of the control units. These machines have been returned to the respective manufacturers in Bangalore and Panchkula in Haryana and a majority of these were replaced.

Senior officials said the election authority had received over 3,000 out of the 3,500 VVPATs that had been sent back and the first level checks on these machines had already been completed successfully.

With the arrival of the replacements, the State now has in its possession 30% excess VVPATs over and above the requirement.

First level

“Since these machines have arrived and their first level checks have been completed, we will soon take a call on the randomisation of the equipment,” a senior official told The Hindu .

The date for randomisation had been tentatively fixed as November 9 and Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar will take a call on the issue at a meeting of the election officials slated on Monday.

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