Hyderabad: The election authorities in Telangana have suggested to the Indian School of Business (ISB) to make the conduct of elections in Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency a case study for its students.
After seeking entry into the Guinness World Records for the maximum number of electronic voting machines (EVMs) used in April 10 elections in the constituency, the poll officials have sent a proposal to the leading business school to make it a case study for students. Telangana Chief Electoral Officer Rajat Kumar said they had suggested to the ISB to use the conduct of polls in Nizamabad as a case study in supply chain management. He pointed out that in terms of logistics, it was a massive exercise as nearly 27,000 Ballot Units (BUs) were used for conducting the polls in this constituency, which had a total of 185 contestants. This exercise of installing record number of EVMs involved about two lakh man-hours of work.
In every polling station, 12 EVMs were used for the polling, which was also a record. The official pointed out that in each of the 1,778 polling centres, 12 BUs were coupled in series and attached to a Control Unit in inverted "L" shape. The poll authorities used M3 type EVMs which can support up to 24 BUs. Polling in Nizamabad was held along with 16 other constituencies in Telangana on April 11. The process was smooth, said Kumar. As many as 178 farmers had entered the fray to highlight their demands for a remunerative price for turmeric and red sorghum and setting up of a Turmeric Board. With 185 candidates in the fray, it was thought the Election Commission will have to go for ballot papers as a normal EVM can accommodate a maximum of 64 names.
However, the poll panel decided to use the EVMs with latest technology developed by the Electronics Corporation of India Ltd (ECIL). The public-sector company was asked to immediately supply required BUs, CUs and VVPATs. After the supply of machines, the authorities faced another challenge of installing them and train the polling staff in view of the special requirements of the constituency. "It was a challenge as 600 engineers from ECIL and BEL and 1,200 other people worked day and night to make all the arrangements," said Kumar. The new system also required deployment of additional polling staff. At every polling booth, two additional officers were deployed. The constituency has a little over 15.53 lakh voters including 3.73 lakh farmers .
Telangana Chief Minister and Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) chief K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter K. Kavitha is seeking re-election from the constituency. The Congress fielded its All India secretary and two-time MP Madhu Yaskhi Goud while D. Arvind is contesting on BJP ticket. Just like polling, the counting arrangements for Nizamabad will also be an elaborate exercise. The officials will use 18 counting tables here against 14 each in other constituencies. The counting of votes will be taken up on May 23 along with the counting in all Lok Sabha constituencies across the country. However, the declaration of result will take more time in Nizamabad.