KOCHI: Though the furore associated with the uncertainty regarding the conduct of local body polls is not yet settled, Mookkannur Panchayat on Wednesday witnessed the vigour and zeal that elections bring in their wake. As a prelude to the local body polls, in which for the first time electronic voting machines will be used, the Election Commission conducted a mock poll at Mookkannur. In spite of the absence of loud campaigns and promises raining left, right and centre, around 236 voters turned up for the poll and also cast their votes. According to the authorities, the poll which began at 11 am wound up at 2 pm. Though three polling stations were set up for the mock poll, only two was used for the voting purpose. The third one was used to give a first hand experience to voters.
The ballots to be used in the voting machine will be white for grama panchayat, pink for block and blue for panchayats. The officials also informed the voters that in the real election, the photographs of the candidates will also be listed in the machine. The mock poll has already been conducted at seven districts and the last in the series will be conducted at Malappuram and Kannur on Saturday.
Earlier, Deputy Collector S Shanavas, felicitated a 94-year-old man, Varghese, by presenting him an ‘Onappudava’ for turning up first to cast his vote. The mock poll was attended by students studying at nearby schools. District Collector M G Rajamanickam, who came there to overlook the preparations, also cast his vote. Poll exercise revealed that a voter took less time to cast his vote on the voting machine than using paper ballot, said an official.