CHENNAI: After a three-year delay, the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission has initiated the first step for conducting local body elections in the State, issuing a gazette notification for preparing the electoral rolls and setting up polling stations.
The last local body election in the State was conducted in October 2011 and the polls were due in October 2016. The State election commission’s move to conduct the polls in October 2016 were stalled by the Madras HC after the DMK filed a petition pointing out the discrepancies in providing reservation. Followed by this, the govt appointed special officers to manage the local bodies and their tenure has been extended five times.
After the Court order, the State constituted the delimitation commission to delimit the local bodies earmarking the reservation based on the 2011 census. The commission recently submitted its recommendations.
Accordingly, the commission recently submitted its recommendations for reservation of newly delimited wards for scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and women. Following the same, as agreed in the Supreme Court, the State election commission has issued notification for poll preparation works.
The order issued by T S Rajasekar, Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Election Commission, on Friday, directed the district level and block level officials concerned, to set up polling stations as instructed in the Commission manual in 2016.
The returning officer should publish the approved list of polling stations at the offices of district election officer, district panchayat, block development officer, village panchayat and other places which the returning officer may consider necessary. While preparing the electoral rolls, TNSEC stated that each page of rolls should have details of 30 voters with their picture as against the 2011 rolls which had 40 voters’ details per page. In addition, every page of rolls should contain the sketch of polling area, said the notification.