According to a TOI report, voters in vast rural areas of MP still remain 'ignorant' about the right to reject despite a Supreme Court directive to the Election Commission to spread awareness among the masses.
A day before assembly elections in MP, EC's nodal officer Sanjay Singh Baghel told TOI, "We are a constitutional body. We are not here to launch a negative campaign. We are not here to go from door to door to tell people that they press on the NOTA button."
Moreover, Uma Shankar Tiwari, a Grade III employee of weights and measures department, was suspended on October 21 after he tried to spread awareness about NOTA option.
Tiwari said, "I was charged with holding a rally on a working day and spreading awareness about NOTA. But the collector forgets that the campaign was launched on a Sunday. There was no question of taking leave. I did not hold any rally. A suspension order and chargesheet were slapped on me. Now, the collector directed me to undergo poll training and report for election duty. How can I undertake the programme if I am under suspension? I fear they might, on the pretext of dereliction of poll duty, take action against me."
NOTA option will be printed in pink on EVMs.
Meanwhile, it was also reported that Bhopal gas victims said they will select the "None Of The Above" (NOTA) button on Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and reject all candidates in the fray in the upcoming assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh.
By opting for 'None of the Above' (NOTA) button, voters will be able to exercise their right to reject all candidates contesting the polls.
The 'None Of The Above' (NOTA) option will be printed in pink on EVMs/ballot papers for the upcoming Assembly polls in all five states.
NOTA option will appear as a rectangle with rounded corners on a black background on which NOTA is written in capital letters in English.
Below the name of the last candidate on the Electronic Voting Machine (EVM), EC will provide the NOTA option for electors who do not wish to vote for any of the candidates in the fray for a particular seat.
EC has already clarified that the candidate securing the highest number of votes would be declared elected even if the number of electors going for the NOTA option surpassed the votes polled by the contestants.