Leh, Oct 24 : The administration in newly carved union territory of Ladakh has set up a 3-tier security system for the “strong room” in Leh to ensure the privacy, security and safety of electronic voting machines (EVMs).
The 6th General Autonomous Hill Development council (LAHDC) election concluded in two phases including the first round of voting through postal ballots on 13 and 14th October while the final day for voters was on 22nd October at over 290 polling booths across Leh district.
Talking to selected group of media house, nodal officer for electronic voting machines (EVMs), Mohammad Ayoub, according to News agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), said that they have setup 3-tier security system for the strong room where all the EVMs were kept in presence of all the political parties and were deposited in strong room with double lock system.
He said that all the security arrangements have been made since the day they started to dispatch EVMs from strong room for the 294 polling stations spread across the Leh.
“We have deployed the Central Reserve police force (CRPF) here for round the clock vigil and security purpose”, he said.
He said that under the set standard operating procedure (SOPs) “we deposited all the EVMs as per the constituencies within the strong room with the presence of all the representatives of political parties/ candidates, and we also informed them about the opening of strong room on Monday at 09:00 am in the morning.”
The nodal officer said that they informed them about the space prepared for seven Returning officers (ROs) and the information of (Identity proof) counting agents must be submitted to their office by tomorrow to maintain the security of the strong room while counting the EVMs and postal ballots.
He appreciated the role of government employees involved in the election duty and said that it was tough during the times of COVID-19.
Meanwhile, an official privy to the election process said that CCTV cameras have also been installed in and outside the strong room to ensure proper security and safety.
Pertinently, the administration has scheduled the counting of votes on Monday (26, October), which will begin at early 09:00 am in the morning.
The election witnessed the total vote’s turnout of 65.07 percent. It may be recalled that two major political parties of J&K that include, National conference (NC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) stayed away from the polls while 94 candidates are in fray from BJP, AAP, Congress and independent.
The poll campaign for LAHDC witnessed the participation of union ministers of BJP who visited the villages to lure voter for party candidates.