Power outages: Webcasting hit in several polling booths

The webcasting of polling activities in several booths in the district suffered some technical glitches on election day.

In order to ensure that polling activities can be monitored from a distance by polling officials, and as a deterrent for people from carrying out any ‘mischievous’ activities, webcasting was effected from 120 critical polling booths in the district.

During visits to various polling booths in the district on Thursday, several computer operators complained about power outages that affected the live streaming of polling activities.

Siddaraju, an operator at booth number 151, at Bilikere of Mysore-Kodagu Lok Sabha constituency, said that regular power cuts on election day affected livestreaming.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, he said that streaming had been interrupted due to power cuts. Even though streaming was being done with the help of laptops and a webcam, which could be run for a couple of hours without power, broadband facility would turn off during power cuts. UPS facility was also not arranged, he added.

Four times

Rashmi, another operator posted at polling booth number 179 at Anjaneya block, K R Nagar of Mandya Lok Sabha constituency, said that streaming was affected at least four times, affecting the polling booth webcast for over an hour on April 17. 

“The problem was with the internet connection which required constant power supply,” she added. 

Similar were the views of Kumari Shobha, posted at polling booth number 196 at Maduvanahalli of Mandya Lok Sabha constituency.

Sources at the district election office said that there were concerns about the feasibility of the use of broadband connection for webcasting purposes, that required a steady power supply.

 “We experimented using USB internet dongles for webcasting. But, since connectivity using dongles is very slow in rural areas, we had to abandon the proposal and used BSNL broadband,” the source said. Due to power fluctuations, webcasting from several booths of rural areas was also affected in the district.

Deputy Commissioner C Shikha said that UPS facility was provided at only a few booths identified for webcasting in rural areas. 

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