Thursday, December 04, 2008

Let's fight Corruption by Exercising our Voting Rights Properly

49-O in Constitution of India

I came across this information from a friend and found it very informative. Please read and find out what special rights you have as a voter.

Did you know that there is a system in our constitution, as per the 1969 act, in section " 49-O" that a person can go to the polling booth, confirm his identity, get his finger marked and convey the presiding election officer that he doesn't want to vote anyone?!

Yes such a feature is available, but obviously these leaders have never disclosed it.
This is called "49-O".
Why should you go and say " I VOTE NOBODY" ?

Because, in a ward, if a candidate wins, say by 123 votes, and that particular ward has received "49-O" votes more than 123, then that polling will be cancelled and will have to be re-polled. Not only that, but the candidature of the contestants will be removed and they cannot contest the re-polling, since people had already expressed their decision on them.

This would bring fear into parties and hence look for genuine candidates for their parties for election. This would change the way of our whole political system.... it is seemingly surprising why the election commission has not revealed such a feature to the public.

This seems to be a wonderful weapon against corrupt parties in India . Show your power, expressing your desire not to vote for anybody, is even more powerful than voting. So don't miss your chance. So either vote, or vote not to vote (vote 49-O) and pass this info on.

It is seen in the past few years that even many of the educated masses take elections as just another holiday to relax and give it a miss. Some feel that all politicians are corrupt, so why vote? And the result is that voting percentage falling especially in cities. And we have alarming percentage of votes, around 40% or so in some places. If someone feels that the candidates in the area are not upto the mark, its better to go to the polling booth and exercise your 49-O rights and let the government know about it. Just choosing to ignore the elections will not get your opinion across.

Use your voting right for a better INDIA.

The exact extracts from the Constitution (THE CONDUCT OF ELECTIONS RULES, 1961), are as under :

49-O. Elector deciding not to vote.-If an elector, after his electoral roll number has been duly entered in the register of voters in Form-17A and has put his signature or thumb impression thereon as required under sub-rule (1) of rule 49L, decided not to record his vote, a remark to this effect shall be made against the said entry in Form 17A by the presiding officer and the signature or thumb impression of the elector shall be obtained against such remark.

Pls click below link for more details


sk said...

This information about "49-O" has come as a pleasant surprise to me, and I must thank you for this. I have been a presiding officer once and have also taken part in counting votes in the EVMs. Surprisingly, I was never made aware about consequences of this rule. Also I don't remember seeing an option of no vote in the EVM. Through the ballot paper voting, it was possible to leave a blank vote. But seeing the consequences of this option is very comforting. I just hope it is true, because no where in the 1969 act it is mentioned about the consequences. Maybe, we all need more details, clarity and awareness about "49-O" and it's effects. Just imagine the power of this rule. How it can empower the ordinary citizens...... Unbelievable.

Shagufta said...

Yes, I also came across this information 2 days back via a mail from a friend. I did my own search on net and added my inputs and the actual link and paragraph. Actually tho' everywhere it says 1969 Act, it is seen in 1961 Act. It had appeared in some newspaper sometime back also, as confirmed by my Dad. This surely brings hope. As to why it is not included in recent EVMs, is questionable. Maybe Govt wants to do away with this rule and wants no one to exercise it. It will amount to headache and more expense for them if people exercise this option. But like you said, there is an option to leave a blank vote. That amounts to the same thing, I think. Only since over the years people have not exercised the option, Election Commission feels no need to mention it in the Election Manuals.

Ravish said...

Thanks for the information about 49-O

Shagufta said...

My pleasure, Ravish. Thanks for stopping by my blog