With about a fortnight left for the Lok Sabha elections, goof-ups in data consolidation by the state and central election offices have left the officials with two different sets of data for number of registered voters across categories.
More than 5,000 voters from the ‘Others’ category have disappeared from the state electoral rolls. Officials blame this on duplication and error in the counting process itself.
Either ways, the Election Commission (EC) has 8,453 people in the ‘Others’ category on its rolls, while the state has just 3,957.
Officials are now scrambling to fix the error in order to ascertain the exact number of voters for the April 17 polls.
According to the data released by state CEO officials on Tuesday, 3,957 candidates have been listed in the ‘Others’ category. However, there are 8,453 voters listed in the ‘Others’ category given by the EC.
CEO Karnataka officials claim that their data is accurate and blamed programming errors for the bloated list given by the EC.
Chief Electoral Officer Anil Kumar Jha said the data provided by the Election Commission is incorrect and that totaling mistakes that followed has resulted in the difference in figures.
Speaking to Express, he said: “There appears to be mistakes in the data given by the EC. The data that we have is accurate and we are not aware of where the EC picked up the figures they have mentioned. We have released the latest figures on Tuesday and ideally they should incorporate them. But getting the EC to correct their figures is a minor issue as we have other priorities.”
While the data from CEO Karnataka was last updated on March 26, the EC data is as on February 14.
There is also a huge mismatch when it comes to the number of male and female voters.
While the EC is yet to integrate the latest data from the State Election Commission into its electoral data, the number of male and female voters is also inconsistent.
Another senior official from the State Election Commission said while the number of male and female voters changed every day, a possible malfunction in the programming being used by the EC may have given rise to the data mismatch.
He claimed that the CEO Karnataka data was accurate and that the entry of data at the polling station-levels may have cumulated into a bloated figure due to programming errors. “Entering data for the electoral rolls is done by us. But there were programming problems because of which the addition was not done properly. It is not a human error,” he said.
Data from as many as 54,261 polling stations has gone into the total calculation.
So when there is calculation error introduced, there is bound to be a huge cumulative effect, he said. ECI officials were unavailable for comment.
Discrepancies in data
Category EC State CEO
Male 2,28,00,918 2,35,55,074
Female 2,18,85,287 2,26,12,084
Others 8,453 3,957