COIMBATORE: The executive officers of No.4 Veerapandi and Sirumugai town panchayats are at their wits’ end following the State Election Commission (EC) notification to conduct election for two ward member posts, for the simple reason that both the areas have not a single voter.
Strange as it may sound, no election has been conducted in these two wards in over a decade, as the voter count here is nil. The officials have written to the EC explaining their inability to conduct the local body polls scheduled for September 18 citing the same reason. However, officials writing to the Election Commission after notification is nothing new, say sources. “They have written to the commission three times in the past decade explaining the same problem,” sources said.
Speaking to Express, S L Kanthasamy, executive officer of Sirumugai Town Panchayat, said, “We have sent a letter to the Election Commission this year too. We also appended letters from the village administrative officer (VAO) and Tahsildar stating that there is not a single voter in the second ward.”
The story of Sirumugai losing its voters is closely-related to the fortune of South India Viscose (SIV) Private Limited, which used to function from here. The company closed down in 2002, following which all the employees, who were also the sole voting population in the area too left.
The story is similar in No. 4 Veerapandi town panchayat, which has not seen an election since 2006. The voters here were employees of the Government of India Press.
All were given quarters on the Press colony premises on Mettupalayam road and were registered on the rolls as voters for ward number 14.
Gradually, the residents vacated the premises following retirement. Things came to such a situation that the press closed down and the houses have been vacant since 2006.
Kanthasamy also said that they had passed a resolution urging the State government to conduct a delimitation drive.