Agartala: Feb 28: The counting phase of the Tripura assembly elections will begin on March 2 at 8 am with the postal ballot. However, EVM counting will start from 8:30 AM without waiting for the counting of postal ballots to be completed. Tripura Chief Electoral Officer Kiran Gitte said this while visiting the counting center at Umakanta Academy in Agartala today.
On this day, he said, the returning officers are finalizing the preparations for the counting. Counting centers have been set up at 21 locations in Tripura. In that, all sub-divisions except Jirania and Mohanpur sub-divisions have enumeration centres. According to him, the counting of assembly constituencies in Jirania and Mohanpur divisions will be held at Umakanta Academy in Agartala. He claimed that counting of total 14 assembly constituencies will be completed in Umakanta Academy. Counting arrangements have been made in two buildings. Counting of 5 assembly constituencies will be done in one building and 9 in the other, he said.
According to him, all arrangements have been made for counting. A media center and temporary restrooms for candidates and observers have been set up at the counting center itself. If there is a delay in the completion of the calculation, they can rest there. On this day, he said, all the counting observers will come today. They will perform duties in all centers on March 2. Moreover, each table in the counting center will have one micro observer. They will be employees under the central government.
According to him, the counting supervisor and the counting agent will give the report to the returning officer. On the other hand, the micro observer will give his report to the observer. The results will be announced after monitoring the two reports. He also added that 5 VVPATs will be selected by lottery in each assembly constituency. The report of that count will also be collated with the EVM results.
According to the Chief Electoral Officer, the polling process was completed in a very peaceful and disciplined manner on March 16. He expressed hope that the counting would be done in the same way. He also assured, all strong rooms are fully secured. Central paramilitary forces are engaged in the security of the strong room. Besides, three-tier security arrangements have been made at the counting centre.
He said the results will be shared with the media after each round on the day of counting and the people of the state will also get regular updates on the counting. Therefore, he appealed to all to crowd outside the counting center unnecessarily. The Chief Election Officer said that 65 thousand 593 postal ballots have been submitted so far. Postal ballots received till the commencement of counting will be accepted.