Counting of votes to be held at nine centers in Virudhunagar district

Counting of 3,97,926 votes polled in the election to 15 urban local bodies in the district on February 19 would be taken up amid three-tier security at nine counting centers on Tuesday.

The votes polled in electronic voting machines of 658 polling stations would be counted in a minimum of three rounds as in Rajapalayam and Srivilliputtur municipalities to a maximum of 20 rounds as in Sivakasi Corporation.

Collector J. Meghanath Reddy said the minimum number of six tables would be put in the counting hall of Sattur and the maximum number of 14 tables for Rajapalayam. Two tables each would be put for the nine town panchayats.

While Sivakasi Corporation had 48 wards, the five municipalities of Aruppukottai, Rajapalayam, Sattur, Srivilliputtur and Virudhunagar had 171. The nine town panchayats of Chettiyarpatti, Kariyapatti, Mallankinaru, Mamsapuram, S. Kodikulam, Seithur, Watarapandi 144 wards.

While Sivakasi Corporation registered a voter turnout of 68.47%, the municipalities recorded 67.12% turnout and the town panchayats 69.24%.

The counting of votes would start at 8 am with sorting out of postal ballots. The EVMs would be brought out from the strong rooms at 8.30 am and would be counted in 82 counting tables.

Each counting center would have three micro-observers – employees of Central government banks – to monitor the movement of EVMs from the strong room, postal ballots and counting of votes in the EVMs. All counting halls and strong rooms would be monitored with closed circuit television cameras.

A total of 164 counting officers would be involved in the job. Besides armed guards for the strong room, adequate security had been provided for the counting halls and the outer periphery of the counting centers, the Collector said.

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