The other elections viz. members of Panchayat union wards and District Panchayat wards in the case of rural local bodies and the elections of Mayor/Chairman and the Ward Councillors of urban local bodies are held on party basis. The electoral rolls for the local body elections are prepared and printed separately, local body ward-wise. But they are prepared adopting the entries in the corresponding electoral rolls of the Assembly constituency area. No separate enumeration of voters as such is undertaken for preparing the local bodies` electoral rolls.
Apart from these direct elections, the following indirect elections are also held:-
A) Rural Local Bodies:
i) a Vice-President of Village Panchayat – by and from among the elected members of each and every village panchayat.
ii) a Chairman of the Panchayat Union Council – by and from among the elected members of each and every Panchayat Union Council.
iii) a Vice-Chairman of the Panchayat Union Council – by and from among the elected members of each and every Panchayat Union Council.
iv) a Chairman of a District Panchayat – by and from among the elected members of every District Panchayat.
v) a Vice-Chairman of a District Panchayat – by and from among the elected members of every District Panchayat.
B) Urban Local Bodies:
i) Deputy Mayors of City Municipal Corporations, and Vice-Chairmen of Municipalities and Town Panchayats – by and from among the elected Councillors of each local body concerned.
ii) Chairpersons of the Ward Committees in City Municipal Corporation areas having a population of three lakhs and above - by and from among the elected Councillors of concerned wards of the Corporations.
iii) Members of the various Statutory and Standing Committees of the respective urban local bodies - by and from among the elected Councillors of each local body concerned.
iv) Chairmen of the Standing Committees of Corporations – by and from among the members of the respective committee.
The Tamil Nadu State Election Commission:
The Tamil Nadu State Election Commission, an independent, autonomous constitutional authority formed under the Constitution of India as per the Provisions of the 73rd and 74th Amendments Acts of 1992 headed by the State Election Commissioner.
As per Article 243-K read with 243-ZA of the Constitution of India, all elections to Panchayats and urban local bodies are to be held under the superintendence, direction and control of the State Election Commission. For the first time in October 1996 the Local Body Elections in Tamil Nadu, hitherto conducted by the Government were taken over by the State Election Commission. The subsequent ordinary elections were held during October, 2001, 2006 and 2011.
The task involved in conducting the elections to the rural as well as for the urban local bodies in Tamil Nadu was elaborate, enormous, massive, magnificent and gigantic besides complicated. We have 99,324 wards in 12,524 Village Panchayats, 6,471 wards in 385 Panchayat Unions, 655 wards in 31 District Panchayats, 8,303 wards in 529 Town Panchayats, 3,697 wards in 125 Municipalities and 820 wards in 10 Corporations apart from the office of Chairpersons numbering 13,604 and as such it is needless to emphasise the size and magnitude of these Elections.
The Local Body Elections, 2011:
In 2011, the Local Body Elections were held throughout the State simultaneously at one stroke in two phases for different offices.
As per the Constitutional mandate the ordinary elections were successfully conducted by the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission in October, 2011. A mammoth 1,32,458 posts had to be filled up by the direct elections and 14,020 posts by indirect elections apart from committee elections. In the direct elections 19,647 candidates were elected unopposed and 4,11,765 candidates were in the fray for the remaining 1,12,745 posts. In these elections, over 2.45 lakhs ballot boxes were used in 60,514 polling stations in rural local bodies. And 78,903 EVMs were used in 25,877 polling stations in urban local bodies. Around 6.30 lakhs polling personnel were deployed. The rural areas recorded high percentage of polling (81.81%) whereas in the urban areas the poll percentage recorded is marginally less (72.52%). The overall poll percentage in the Local body election, 2011 is 78.80 which is higher than all the previous ordinary local body elections.The Commission has embarked a clear, crisp and comprehensive plan with all purposes and concluded its task successfully thereby strengthening the process of decentralisation and democratisation of grass root democracy in Tamil Nadu.