While four panchayat unions including Kalakadu, Nanguneri, Radhapuram and Vallioor went to polls in Tirunelveli district, polls were held in five panchayat unions including Kadayanallur, Kuruvikulam, Sankarankoil, Sengottai and Tenkasi in Tenkasi district. After casting his ballot at Periyanayagipuram village in Vallioor union, Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker M Appavu said people got this opportunity to elect representatives of their choice after a long gap of ten years.
Meanwhile, the humanitarian efforts of PEW Sub Inspector of Police Syed Nisar caught the attention of many as he carried an elderly woman, who approached a booth at Sankarapuram village in Vallioor union, on his shoulder to help her access the booth. A video clip of the cop’s helping tendency and photo images went viral on social media and it’s trending.
Earlier, several voters from nine panchayat wards of Chidambarapuram in Vallioor union were reluctant to cast their ballots as the delimitation exercise forced them to be part of Palavoor and Avaraikulam panchayats-which are far off. However, the electoral authorities convinced them, sources said.
Only 19 votes of the total 3440 votes were polled at the Naikaneri tribal hamlet in Madanur panchayat union in Tirupattur district when the second phase of polling for rural local body polls were held on Saturday. Though Collector Amar Kuswaha visited the area and encouraged residents to vote, locals who opposed the village panchayat being reserved for the SC (women) category refused to budge.
Of the 6 polling booths in the panchayat, 5 booths did not get even a single vote while the booth at Kamanurthattu the native hamlet of P Indumathi who was ‘elected’ as panchayat president for the area received her vote and that of 18 relatives of hers, sources said. As residents were totally against her presidentship, Indumathi was escorted by armed police to cast her vote.
Polling was peaceful in Vellore, Ranipet, Tirupattur and Tiruvannamalai districts with the polling figures at 3 pm being 54.50% (Vellore), 67.90% (Tiruvannamalai), 63.81% (Ranipet) and 54.33% (Tirupatthur). While a large crowd of gypsies (narikuravas) turned up to exercise their franchise at Thaingai polur in Arakkonam panchayat union, sources said that polling was sluggish due to the scorching heat.
But at Pappanapalli panchayat in Madanur PU, a sudden downpour resulted in poll equipment being drenched due to a leaking roof. Polling was halted for ten minutes while a thick plastic sheet was spread over the roof tiles to prevent water entering the polling booth.