“EVMs are like calculators and cannot be hacked or tampered with through our digital devices,” Chief Electoral Officer Sathyabrata Sahoo said. The suspected movement of large vehicles near strong rooms were mobile toilets and the machines are safe, Sahoo said.
He said that the counting of votes will commence on May 2, which is a Sunday. The current lockdown announced by the state will be applicable on all Sundays only till April 30 and the district election officials are taking all steps to ensure a free and fair counting, Sahoo said.
The DEO will start with the postal votes and after completing the postal votes, the first round for EVMs ballot units will start, the CEO said hinting that the counting of EVM votes will start by 8.30 am on May 2.
Earlier in the day, EC deputy election commissioner Chandrabushan Kumar conducted a review meeting with TN CEO Sahoo and district election officers to discuss the arrangements for the counting of votes on May 2. The three-tier security system in place for all the 75 counting stations and the logistic arrangements required for the counting were discussed during the meeting, official sources said.
Given the increasing COVID numbers, the EC had also suggested the state CEOs to ensure virus tests for those to be deployed at counting centres.