Scripts to process voter lists in PDF format.
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Scripts to process voter lists in PDF format. Voter lists with indic chars in them are not handled yet. Only english voter lists work as expected. And even then, YMMV.

Support for unicode is being developed in the "unicode-support" branch. The unicode branch has additional software depdendencies, including patches to be applied to harfbuzz and pdftoxml. I will publish these as early as possible.


First, get some files from the electoral rolls: (This will take some time, as the files need to be fetched from the internet.)

$ ./ 154 310 348

Here : - 154 is the AC number - (310, 338) is the booth range. - The range for this full constituency is (1,348) - approx 5 MB every file.

The voter lists are fetched to the directory 'ceo-files'.

After this, there are two methods to process the files.

New Method

This method uses pdf2xml to process the PDF file, followed by geometric methods to determine the data.

First, you need to run pdftoxml. For Windows users, precompiled binaries are included in precompiled-binaries/win32/

$ pdftoxml ceo-files/AC1540310.pdf converted/AC1540310.xml

This converts the source PDF file into an XML representation. You will see an additional directory "AC1540310.xml_data" in the "converted" direction. This contains files referenced in the xml.

$ ./ converted/AC1540310.xml

This will generate voterlist.csv. Note: csv file has pipe symbol (|) as separator. This is necessary due to usage of the comma in address field.

After this is done, have a look at the generated voterlist.csv. It may be necessary to tweak to use slightly different values...

Debug Information

parse-geometric can dump information about it's internal processing. This can be used to fine-tune parameters, as well as to understand what is happening behind the scenes.

This is activated via the -d option.

To understand processing for epic REJ5021886, you might use:

$ ./ -d -e REJ5021886 converted/AC1540347.xml

This will dump info about all voter records for REJ5021886 in the file. (Note: there may be more than one. We don't differentiate among the multiple records yet)

To specify a specific page, use the page option "-p". This will dump all records in the specified page.

If both epic and page are given, then a specific record only is dumped, and that only if it exists.

The script will not warn if no records match in debug mode. If you see no output, please check params!a

If you don't give any of -p or -d options, then debug info will be dumped for all records!

Earlier Method

This method relies on the relative ordering of data in PDF files. This was hurriedly cooked up by Shree earlier, and is not a robust method. Not recommended for use.

Convert the PDF into a "decoded text" form

$ ./

This will create a directory "converted" with equivalent PDF files that contain decoded text.

Next, generate the list

$ ./extract-voter-info 

This will save the voter list in the file 'voterlist.csv'


PS: It would be really nice to make apps of various types that use the data.

Search with good-ol-grep ! You can search by name or EPIC number

$ grep REJXXXXXXX voterlist.csv

Multiple matches, fuzzy matches, creative matches, match by relative, etc can next be done. Also, you may run grep on the files in the "conv" directory - another powerful way to query.