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Cameras keep track at special EVM cell

Ranchi, which faces the tough task of ensuring smooth transport of electronic voting machines (EVMs) to Lohardaga and Khunti as some areas of these two constituencies are located in the district, has constituted an EVM cell to monitor the entire process.

The cell, which has been formed under the supervision of deputy commissioner-cum-district election officer Vinay Kumar Choubey, operates out from Morabadi’s Birsa Munda Football Stadium, where the EVMs have been kept. As many as eight officials have been deputed at the cell, while a number of workers are handling sorting and other jobs.

The EVMs have already been brought to the cell after first-level checking by engineers from Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL). “The BEL engineers checked the EVMs to ensure that they don’t develop any glitch during the elections before sending them here. The machines have been kept under surveillance at the two strongrooms at the stadium,” said an official, not willing to be named.

Speaking about their tasks, he added: “We have been entrusted with the responsibility to send EVMs to Mandar in Lohardaga constituency and Tamar and Bundu that fall under Khunti constituency. This apart, EVMs will have to be transported to all polling booths in the whole of Ranchi constituency from here.”

An EVM comprises two units — ballot and control.

While Mandar will need 379 ballot and control units, for Tamar and Bundu, the requirement is 248 ballot and control units.

In Ranchi, the total number of control and ballot units required is 2,122 and 4,244, respectively. “As of now, the cell has a total of 3,263 ballot units and 5,426 control units. We will need an additional 1,608 ballot units to meet the total requirement and have written to the chief electoral officer,” the official added.

As for security, the EVMs have been put under the surveillance of eight CCTV cameras.

DC Choubey said as Lohardaga constituency is one of the first to go to polls on April 10, the second-level checking of EVMs for Mandar would be held on April 1.

Ranchi and Khunti will witness voting on April 17.