Hyderabad: Telangana has become the first state in India to use a computer application to recognise the faces of voters. The Election Commission has selected ten polling stations in Kompally municipality of Medchal-Malkajgiri district for the implementation of the facial recognition app.

Local body elections are being held in 120 municipalities and nine municipal corporations across Telangana on January 22. The results will be announced on January 25. Elections in Karimnagar Municipal Corporation will be held on January 25 and its outcome will be declared two days later.

The photographs taken to feed the app will not be stored or used in future. “So there would not be any misuse of data or photograph of the voters,” said a senior official.

Once the votes are cast, the photos will be erased from the memory of the smartphone used at the polling station as well as the TSTS server. “The Telangana State Technology Services (TSTS) should submit an undertaking stating that the photograph of voters will be deleted from its server after the polling process is over. The entire process is encrypted, and data is safe. The input files including encrypted data and photographs will be deleted as soon as the voter casts his vote,” added the official.

An officer at the polling booth holds a smartphone to verify the identity of the voter. After scrutinising the ID details of the voters, the officer takes a photograph and uploads it to the server on which the facial recognition application is installed.

The app processes the details and photographs of the voter and displays the results, whether it matches or not.

Dasari Sreenivasa Rao

Dasari Sreenivasa Rao is a freelance journalist with 26 years of mainstream media experience in Hyderabad and Dubai. He was Business Editor at The Pioneer and Spl Correspondent at Deccan Chronicle and The Hans India. Earlier, he worked for prestigious media brands including ToI, Indian Express (Bombay) and SPG Media and Business Standard in Hyderabad. NSE-qualified Dasari specializes in derivatives trading. He was visiting faculty at IGNOU and handled two batches of journalism students. Dasari is passionate about business journalism and always suggests all to practice rigorous meditation that ensures peace of mind and helps in moving up the value chain.

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