A day after the National Voters’ Day celebrations in Chennai, Chief Electoral Officer Satyabrata Sahoo has passed notifications appointing returning officers (ROs) and assistant returning officers (AROs) for all the 234 Assembly constituencies in the state.
Last month, the election department designated the district collectors as the designated district election officers for all 38 districts, including the newly carved out five districts. Now the ROs and AROs will be the secondary level officers executing the election works under the district collectors and will also scrutinise the election nomination papers of candidates. The AROs will take over the counting and polling process in their respective jurisdiction along with revenue department officials.
The third tier will be the presiding officers, handling the polling booths reporting to AROs. These presiding officers will be picked up from government schools, revenue department and collectorates. Under the presiding officers, booth level officers and assistants will be deputed. The state has now finalised the poll staff for the top three levels and the last two levels will be filled and designated once when the model code of conduct comes into force.
The district election offices will now start functioning at full pace with the ROs and AROs forming teams, informed sources said adding that the revenue department will impart three rounds of training for those who will be pressed into poll duty.