All necessary arrangements were put in for counting of votes on Friday for the Lok Sabha elections, in which over 8,000 candidates are in the fray for 542 seats of the parliament.
In all, 67.11 percent of the 90.99 crore electors exercised their franchise in the seven-phase long polling process. This is the highest ever voter turnout in Indian Parliamentarian elections.
Of the total 543 Parliamentary seats, elections were held in 542 constituencies. The Election Commission had cancelled polls to the Vellore seat in Tamil Nadu on the grounds of excessive use of money power.
Counting will also take place for four state assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. The results are expected only by late evening due to tallying of Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail slips with the Electronic Voting Machines.
This is the first time that results of voting machines will be matched with slips generated by paper trail machines.
The exercise will take place in five polling stations selected at random per Assembly segment. This effectively means the EVM-VVPAT matching will be conducted in 20,600 of nearly 10.3 lakh polling stations.
As per procedure, postal ballots would be the first to be counted. There were 18 lakh such voters, of which 16.49 lakh have already sent their postal ballots to their respective returning officers.
Meanwhile, a 24- hour EVM Control Room has been set up at Nirvachan Sadan in New Delhi to monitor complaints relating to polled EVMs. The Control Room contact number is 011-23052123.