MPVL marker pens to replace indelible ink vials
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MPVL marker pens to replace indelible ink vials

July 21, 2017

Mysuru: The indelible ink vials manufactured by the Mysore Paints and Varnish Limited (MPVL) for marking the fingers of those casting their votes will soon roll into history as the company is manufacturing trendy marker pens for the same purpose. The MPVL, also called MyLAC, which is the sole supplier of ink for elections, is awaiting a final nod from the Election Commission of India (ECI).

The marker pen facility at the MPVL was inspected this morning by Karnataka State Election Commissioner (SEC) and senior IAS officer P.N. Sreenivasachari.

The MPVL has already developed such marker pens on the instructions from the ECI India with technical support from National Physical Laboratory, National Research Development Corporation and the National Chemical Laboratory on the technology, the colour combination and the texture of the ink.

Explaining about the marker pen, MPVL Chairman H.A. Venkatesh told the SEC that the company was ready to supply marker pens to the upcoming Urban Local Body elections in January 2018. The SEC said that the purpose of his visit was to examine the facilities at MPVL to manufacture the marker pens and submit a report to the ECI.

A different version of the specially designed marker pen was used in the recently conducted Presidential elections where 1,000 pens were supplied to mark the ballot papers. Only such votes that had the markings from the pen were considered valid. Venkatesh told the SEC that MPVL was geared up to meet the requirements for the local bodies elections.

A worker gives a demo on preparation of paint at MPVL today.

“We are ready to supply marker pens for the local body elections, 2018 Assembly elections and the General Elections in 2019. We have innovated new technology with polyurethane paints and we have modernised our plant to meet the huge requirement,” Venkatesh said.

Explaining the benefits of the marker pen, he said, “Marker pens are convenient, user-friendly and economical. When we used to transport the indelible ink vials in containers, there were complaints of wastage, leakages and spill-over. With the marker pens now, there are no such fears and it is convenient to carry and to apply. It also saves time of the polling booth officials.”

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Sreenivasachari told the MPVL authorities that a series of elections were lined up after January 2018 and he had come to inspect the MPVL to study its preparedness. “I came here to examine the viability of the marker pens, cost factors and other issues. For the local body election alone, we would need over 55,000 pens to mark over 3 crore voters,” he said.  

MPVL chairman Venkatesh said that each pen could be used to mark 1,000 voters. A 5 ml pen costs Rs. 37.45 and a 10 ml pen costs Rs. 142 plus taxes. A 10-ml marker pen can be applied on 2,000 voters.

MPVL Managing Director Siddalingappa B. Poojari, Chief Executive Officer C. Hara Kumar and others were present during the inspection.

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