Bhopal: All arrangements for the counting of votes for 29 parliamentary seats on Thursday have been completed. Number of VVPAT slips will be considered decisive in case there is any mismatch between EVM total and VVPAT slips. Counting on May 23 will begin with postal ballots, ETPBS (Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System) and EDC (Election Duty Certificate). Separate provision has been made for counting of such ballots which will be done in a separate room. There are more than 70,000 such votes. A separate team will be engaged in counting of VVPAT (Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail) slips. Counting of paper slips from EVMs will be done at the end of counting. Slips from five randomly selected EVMs from each assembly constituency will be counted. In case if there is any mismatch between result of EVM and counted paper slips then the counted paper slips will be considered final.

More than 17,000 employees will be engaged in counting. Separate arrangements of police personnel have been made for the counting. About 17 companies of central armed forces are already deployed at strong rooms across the state besides state and district police. An average of 14 tables will be used for counting for each assembly constituency but this number may vary with the number of booths in an assembly constituency. Returning officer of Katni has sought special permission to conduct counting on 21 tables which has been granted by the election commission of India. Indore constituency will witness counting in 27 rounds- probably highest in MP.