TIRUPATI: Those who are going to vote in the upcoming by-elections for the Tirupati parliamentary constituency on April 17, will be inked on the index finger of their right hand. The Central Election Commission (CEC) has issued orders to this effect.
It is the norm for election officials to ink the left index finger of voters in every election. However, in Andhra Pradesh, the voters had exercised their right to vote in the recently held municipal elections.
For many people, the indelible ink on the left hand finger applied at that time has not yet faded for many people. It was in this context that the CEC took this decision and also to avoid any issues that might crop up during the polling day. The Returning Officers, presiding officers and elections officials have been directed by the CEC to issue directions to the staff at the polling booths to this effect.
The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) has been enforced in all seven Assembly segments under the Tirupati Parliamentary constituency after the by-poll notification was issued on March 23. As many as 2,80,351 identified voters may exercise their franchise from the Tirupati Assembly segment in the ensuing by-poll.
The last date for filing nominations is March 30 and April 3 is the last date for withdrawal of nominations. Polling will be held on April 17. and the counting of votes will take place on May 2. The whole election procedure will be completed by May 4 as stated in the schedule.
Voters will exercise their franchise through electronic voting machines (EVMs) and Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail(VVPAT) during the by-election.