Indian Express

As EC website crashes due to overload, party workers use apps to locate voters

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Polling officers seal the EVMs at a centre in Kumtekar Road. Polling officers seal the EVMs at a centre in Kumtekar Road.

A common sight at the polling booths in city was Election Commission officials helping voters with voting slips. Aggrieved voters, who failed to find their names on the electoral roll, returned home to search their names online but found the message “service unavailable” on EC’s official website that crashed. While the exact number of visitors of the day could not be traced, the website had 40.23 lakh visitors till evening.

The electoral search engine on the website either displayed an error or could not be opened for hours, thus, resulting in many people giving up and refraining from voting. While disappointed voters were either seen arguing with election officials or expressing disgust over the system, party workers were quick to assist and locate the names of a few by using applications that yielded quick results as against the ‘virtually hung’ website- ceo.maharashtra.gov.in.

At Orchid School polling booth in Baner, Congress party workers used an app, Me Amdar, to locate the names of voters on electoral roll. “My uncle, a Congress worker, has bought the app for Rs 50,000 for the Kothrud constituency. The app that has around 53,000 voters’ names on it,” said Vaibhav Tapkir, a Congress worker.

Developed by Diwanji Software Solutions, Pune, the software also helps generate reports like voters list by references, key person voters list, worker- wise voters list, family report, surname report and double name voter list.

Another app, Satta, which uploaded the supplements of voters list on mobile phones, was also being used by party workers. “Satta developed by Anay Systems helps us with the lists that have been uploaded later. There are workers who have purchased the apps,” another party worker added. But, despite the software-driven electoral machine, the voters were left wishing only if there was a software to quickly update their missing names too.

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