Bangalore, May 10 (UNI) A substantial number of voters holding ID cards issued by the Election Commission could not exercise their franchise, as their names were missing from the list of voters, in the first phase of Assembly elections in Karnataka here today.
Talking to UNI a voter Mohammed Ali, who was ''denied'' his right to vote said, ''I am a permanent resident in Malleswaram Assembly Constituency and seven members of my family hold ID cards issued by the EC but our names are missing in the electoral list.'' He, however, refused to attribute any particular party for not finding his family members' name in the voters list. The same was the case of his neighbour, who belonged to a majority community.
Mr Tapan Basad, a central observer for the Sheshadripuram Assembly Constituency, said even though it was the responsibility of the authorities concerned to ensure inclusion of all genuine voters in the electoral list, citizens also have the duty to ensure that their names exist in the list.
The Joint state electoral officer B V Kulkarni, while agreeing that there were several instances of missing names in the voters list of those who had ID cards issued by the EC, said it may be due to their absence while officials concerned visited their homes for verification.
Chief Election Commisioner N Gopalasswamy during his visit to the state in the run up to the preparations for the elections had issued instructions to the authorities concerned to ensure that voters, who were issued ID cards by the EC find their names in the final electoral list. However, it seems that the EC's direction did not yield positive result.
Hundreds of people could not exercise their franchise in today's election as their names were not included in the final electoral list, though they had submitted Form Six during the time for inclusion.
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