Bhubaneswar: Amid speculation over early general elections, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar Tuesday said the final list of voters in the state for the next poll will be published January 4, 2019.
The CEO’s statement indicates that the Election Commission of India (ECI) may conduct the polls in 2019 and not this year. However, all eyes are fixed on the next move of the Modi government.
Addressing a press conference here Tuesday, Kumar said the draft voter list will be out September 1, 2018 while people can file complaints till October 31 if they have any issues with the draft list.
“The summary revision of voter list will be started from September 1 and continue till October end. During this period, people can apply for fresh registration, deletion and rectification in the existing lists,” he said. The electoral officers will hear public grievances in this regard till November 31 and the final voter list will be published January 4, 2019, Kumar said.
Stating that importance will be given to aspects like inclusion of all young voters, the CEO said, “Special camps and drives will be conducted at various institutions and places to include young voters of age 18 or 19 in the voters’ list. Youngsters, who will attend 18 years as January 1, 2019, can also register their names,” he said.
Special arrangements like ramps and wheel-chairs will be made available for persons with disabilities. Kumar said he will request the ECI to relax the norms for PwDs so that they will not stand in queues to cast their vote in polling booths.
At present, the state has 3.12 crore voters out of which male voters account for 1.61 crore, female 1.51 crore and transgenders 2,151.
On preparedness for the coming poll, he said Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) and Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) will be used for voting. About 96,000 EVMs will be brought from six states – Chhattisgarh, Assam, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.