Assembly polls: 69% polling in Tamil Nadu, 70% in Kerala

Two voters casting their votes in Kerala assembly elections. 16 May 2016.

Polling for the Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry Territorial Assembly ended peacefully on Monday.

While Tamil Nadu recorded 69% voting till 5 pm Kerala recorded 70% voting by then. The Union Territory recorded 84 percent polling. Puducherry has reported 86 percent voting in the 2011 Assembly elections.

In Kerala, Polling continue in a very cordial and peaceful atmosphere in all the 140 Assembly Constituencies. No untoward incident reported so far. As per information received from CEO office the vote turn out was 70. 35 percent up to 5 pm.

A voter casting her vote in Tamil Nadu. 16 May 2016.

A voter casting her vote in Tamil Nadu. 16 May 2016.

Tamil Nadu has seen a peaceful polling for the state Assembly today, though it was dampened by the unseasonal rain. The voter awareness efforts by the Election officials included highly innovative measures like roping in social media and microblogging sites like Facebook and Twitter. Incidentally, more than 30 percent of the voters are subscribers of these Information Technology tools and their power has been tapped by the Election Commission.

The chief electoral officer Rajesh Lakhoni told media, the poll percentage is lower in towns than in rural areas as it used to be. Historically, areas like Ramnad, Nagapattinam and many other Delta districts used to register more than 80 percent of polling, but this time torrential rainfall in the areas played spoilsport. In this election, youth volunteers were deployed in over 13000 booths with wheelchairs to help elders. Such measures make it a model poll in more ways than one.

The unseasonal rains that lashed Puducherry and Karaikal played spoilsport and caused a drop in polling. Though Shamianas were raised in most Polling Stations, it proved insufficient as the downpour was heavy. The pace of polling improved in the afternoon as weather cleared.

A voter showing the ink mark after casting his vote in Puducherry. 16 May 2016.

A voter showing the ink mark after casting his vote in Puducherry. 16 May 2016.

Though political parties requested the Election Commission for extension of polling time at least by an hour the Commission stuck to its schedule. Briefing the media Chief Electoral Officer V Candavelou said that the polling went uninterrupted in all the 930 polling stations. Unexpected rains led to power failure at several places and caused inconvenience in certain booths.

Though there were some minor scuffles between party cadres, not even a single FIR is filed on the polling day thanks to the elaborate security arrangements by Puducherry Police.

Counting of votes is scheduled for 19th May. The Electronic Voting Machines are being moved to the safety of Counting Centres, two in Puducherry and one each in Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam.


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