“The ECI has instructed that PPE be provided to voters at the booths. Due to several protocols, the polling duration has been increased to 12 hours and would be held from 7 am to 7 pm, “ Prakash said after a meeting with representatives of political parties. No application, however, has been received from COVID patients to cast postal voters, but around 7,300 voters above 80 years of age and persons with disabilities will cast their votes from homes. “The last date for applying for postal votes ended on March 16. Logically, those infected would be cured by polling day,” he said.
During the meeting, the civic body requested political parties to make their booth agents and party workers above 45 years of age get the vaccine. Also, Prakash handed over the list of 7,300 people who would exercise their franchise from home to the party representatives. “A total of 70 teams have been formed for 16 constituencies to collect votes from the 7,300 people. If any voter is not available at the house, the team will visit them for a second time. If the voters miss the second chance too, they will not be able to cast their votes at the booths either,” Prakash said.
Polling officials had distributed more than 1.2 lakh forms in the 16 assembly constituencies in the city but only 12,000 voters sent the filled-in applications. Of the 12,000, only 7,300 voters are eligible and these include 6,992 elderly persons and 308 persons with disabilities.