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Election updates in Tamilnadu; Rain plays spoilsport!
Voting during rain!
Rain plays spoilsport and election tragedies!
Rain played spoilsport in Tamilnadu elections. In many of the Southern districts, there was rain from the commencement of polls. In spite of the rains, many sincere voters are seen assembled at the polling booths with umbrellas. But besides the rain, there was power failure. Due to rain there was poor visibility. Hence at many of the booths, only candles were the sole source of light. But the enclosure where voters really vote, the visibility was awful. With the help of pen torch light shown by the booth in charge, many voters pressed the electronic voting machines against the symbols of the contestants. Needless to say, the voting was slow and painstaking.
In some other booth, the election in charge of the booth developed chest pain and collapsed. On the way to the hospital, he expired. But the polling was not stopped and it continued with the help of some other official. In few more places, the elderly voters standing on the line collapsed down dead. One lady after casting her vote came out in the open rain and she was struck by lightening and sadly passed away. Even during the campaign, seven people died of sunstroke previously. Hence this election seems to be special in many aspects.
How dark is the polling booth?
Problems faced by the voters in some booths.
We are wondering at the advancement of civilization, scientific break through and the shrinking of the globe due to instant communication gadgets. These things have hardly contributed to transparency in voting. The Election Commission exerted every muscle to conduct the elections incidents free. But more and more incidents crop up every day. The seizure of five containers with lot of cash is still unresolved. The commission too tries to suppress such news from public. Thanks to the proliferation of media in every nook and corner of the state and the abundant applications available in smart phones, within minutes, even video of the unsavory incidents are transmitted to one and all and they go viral easily.
In some important VIP constituencies, many new techniques are adopted to scare the voters. The ink mark made on the nail and fingers generally remain for more than twenty four hours and it can not be scrapped away easily. But in the VVIP booths, using power failure, some thugs have replaced the indelible ink with ordinary ink. It was found that the ink mark could be easily erased. Hence new techniques are adopted at places out of fear of defeat or lower margins. Of course, it is not easy to conduct such vast exercise single handedly. Hence, the Election commission has utilized the entire state level machinery under its control for the smooth conduct of elections. Only government officials of both the state and central government are utilized for manning the booths. There is a clamor of extending the closing time of election today due to rain. The commission may extend another one hour of polling in places where there is heavy rainfall.
Lacunas in decision making by the authorities!
In any government, there will be many loyal officers to the politicians who rule the state. Hence, as a precautionary measure, many top level officers were shifted away from their places just after announcement of poll dates. In their places, election commission has posted some impartial officers and personnel. Also those officials who have already completed three years tenure were shifted to other areas. Usually, the lower level bureaucracy is capable of creating more mischief than the officers. Hence most of the old timers have been shifted to other areas where they are quite new. Even after all these steps, the commission is not fully successful in curbing money circulations in certain pockets of the state. The poor people are their sole targets. Poverty forces people to accept cash and gifts in lieu of their valuable franchise.
Peculiarly, the election commission has cancelled polling in two constituencies. They are scheduled much after the counting date of other constituencies. When people are aware of the winning trend of the state on the polling dates, the other two constituencies will go to the winning party only. There seems to be some confusion in higher echelons of the commission. In such a situation, the results of the two constituencies which go for election might be challenged in the courts of law. Either the two constituencies must be scheduled for poll before the counting dates of the other constituencies or the entire counting should be delayed till the elections of all constituencies are over!
How the election commission has not applied their mind to this core issue is still a debatable issue.