Days after a Chennai Corporation official was found carrying a VVPAT machine on his motorbike, Tamil Nadu Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Satyabrata Sahoo said that the machine had 15 votes in it and was used for 50 minutes on April 6. The DMK and Congress had expressed their outrage over the incident on April 6 and demanded that repolling be conducted at the booth to which the EVMs belonged.
According to reports, Satyabrata Sahoo told the media that the transportation of the EVMs, the control unit and the VVPAT machine in a motorbike was in violation of the polling norms. He added that a report on the incident has been sent to the Election Commission of India (ECI) for action. Sahoo also said that two EVMs, a control unit and a VVPAT were carried on the bike, of which only the VVPAT was used for polling and that it eventually developed a glitch and was not used after the polling of 15 votes.
The incident, which happened on April 6 in Chennaiās Velachery hours after polling ended across Tamil Nadu, evoked sharp criticism from various political parties. As per the preliminary investigation conducted by the District Electoral Officer (DEO), the EVMs were not used in polling and the machines belonged to the DAV School booth in Velachery. However, transporting polling machines on a two-wheeler is a violation of poll code and hence, the CEO has sent a report to the ECI. Satyabrata Sahoo assured that strict action will be taken against anyone violating the norms.
After it was found that the men carrying the machines were staffers of the Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC), the civic body suspended the three staff members. Sahoo also said that if ECIās verification of booth documents and polling account sent by the CEO shows discrepancies, ECI will consider repolling in that booth.