Tamil Nadu has recorded 53.55% of voter turnout in the assembly polls till 3 pm on Tuesday. The polling is underway in the state and the screen will be curtailed down at 7 pm post which the final voter turnout will come to light. The final voter turnout will stir the predictions from the exit polls and it has been expected that the state would close up the poll with 75% to 80% of the final voter turnout.
Tamil Nadu Chief Electoral Officer Satyabrata Sahoo said that the state has recorded 53.55% of voter turnout till 3 pm. Chennai has registered 46.46% voter turnout till 3 pm and according to the latest data of the election commission on the district-wise poll percentage, Namakkal district has reported the highest voter turnout till 3 pm with 59.73% while Tirunelveli has recorded the lowest with 41.58%.
The districts that had reported less than 50% of the voter turnout till 3 pm include Chennai (46.46%), Nagapattinam (49.59%), Chengalpattu (44.72%), and Tirunelveli (41.58%). The rest of the districts had 55% of voter turnout on average. Sahoo said that the polling exercise has been going smooth across the state except for one or two incidents that witnessed issues related to the Electronic Voting Machines and asserted that these were sorted out immediately.
He further said that there has been no complaint so far and the electoral observers and zonal parties have been monitoring the polling exercise and in case of any problem, they would attend immediately. The voter turnout in the state stood at 26.29 percent at 11 am and the rate was doubled in four hours. The polling for the crucial assembly polls had begun at 7 am on Tuesday and the voters are getting queued up at their respective polling stations to cast their votes.
The Election Commission of India had installed over 88,000 polling booths across the state and the state has more than 6.26 crore eligible voters. Ever since the polling began, the voters had eagerly lined up before the booths to cast their votes and the commission had distributed the voter information slips to the people to help them identify their booths. The COVID-19 protocols are strictly imposed at the polling stations and the voters are mandated to wear masks and observe social distancing.
The Election Commission has made arrangements to ensure that the Corona patients can cast their votes. The last one hour of polling, from 6 pm to 7 pm, has been reserved for the Corona patients and they can come to the polling stations during this time and they can cast their votes. The electoral officers and Corona patients are mandated to wear PPE kits.
Several political leaders and celebrities including Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami, Deputy Chief Minister Panneerselvam, DMK President MK Stalin, MNM Chief Kamal Haasan, AMMK's TTV Dhinakaranm, and Naam Tamilar's Seeman had cast their votes at their respective polling stations. Actors like Rajinikanth, Vijay, Ajith, Vikram, Suriya, Karthi, Sibiraj, Arun Vijay, Jiiva, Simbu, Sivakarthikeyan, Vijay Sethupathy, Soori, Trisha, and Andrea had registered their votes.
Around 4000 candidates are contesting in the polls for 234 assembly seats. Tamil Nadu has been witnessing five fronts of the race to the reign - the ruling ADMK alliance, the opposition DMK alliance, Kamal Haasan- Sarathkumar - IJK, TTV Dhinakaran - Vijayakanth, and Seeman's Naam Tamilar Katchi. The votes will be counted on May 2, during which the results will be announced. Along with Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry are also going through the assembly polls.