Kottayam: Puthuppally Legislative Assembly Constituency is holding the much-awaited by-election today.
In all, 182 polling booths are ready decide the successor to Oommen Chandy, the MLA of the constituency for 53 years, whose passing has necessitated the bypoll.
On the eve of the election, Kottayam District Collector V Vigneshwari and Police Chief K Karthik said that all the arrangements were complete.
Four sensitive booths
Booth numbers 91, 92, 93, and 94 established at the Central Lower Primar School, Velloor, falling under the Pampady police station limits have been identified as sensitive booths. An additional civil police officer will be deployed for security in addition to the usual number at these four booths.
A public holiday has been declared for government, semi-government, educational and commercial establishments in Puthuppally constituency today.
The employees working in private enterprises, establishments, industrial units, and shops that fall under the purview of the Shops and Commercial Establishments Act are eligible for a holiday with wages.
The holiday given to all educational institutions, which will function as polling stations, on Monday, will continue today as well.
Only vehicles deployed for election duty will be allowed on the polling day on the stretch of the KK Road between the Traffic Island near the Kottayam Collectorate and the Traffic Island before Malayala Manorama.
Vehicles arriving from the KK Road-Kanjikuzhy side should take a turn from the Collectorate Junction to enter Logos Junction-Shastri Road and proceed further. Vehicles going towards the collectorate from the Manorama direction should turn from Manorama Junction to Good Shepherd Road-Logos junction.
Prohibitory orders in place
Prohibitory orders have been imposed in the Puthuppally constituency effective from Sunday (September 3) at 6 pm to Tuesday (September 4) at 6 pm.
Gathering of people and holding of rallies and public meetings in connection with the by-election have been prohibited.
Code of conduct
The slips given to voters should be on white paper. They should not carry the names of the candidate, the party or the symbol.
Liquor should not be sold nor served on the polling day and 48 hours prior to it.
People should not crowd near polling booths or the camps put up by political parties and candidates.
The camps established by candidates should be without frills. They should not display wall-mounted advertisements, flags or symbols. Food should not be distributed.
Restrictions on the use of vehicles on the polling day should be obeyed. The permits for the use of vehicles should be displayed on the vehicle.
Except for the voters, no one should enter the polling booths without the due pass obtained from the Central Election Commission or the District Election Officer.
Non-voters asked to leave constituency
The Chief Electoral Officer has directed that since the election campaign has come to an end, political workers who are not voters in the constituency should leave the place. The official asked the district administration and the district chief of police to enforce this.
Counting of votes on Friday
The counting of votes will begin at 8 am on September 8 at the facility arranged in the auditorium of Baselius College, Kottayam. There are a total of 20 tables for the counting.
The votes from Electronic Voting Machines will be counted on 14 tables, while five tables will tally postal ballots and one table will be for counting Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBS) votes for service personnel.
There will be 13 rounds of counting.
A 44-member Armed Police contingent has been deployed to ensure the counting centre’s security.