Anna's 'Napasandi' to SC's 'Right to Reject'-Key Takeaways

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SC 'Right to Reject'-takeaways
New Delhi, Sept 27: The 'Right to reject' is there in the judicial system as Section 49(O), which allows a voter to declare openly, even while exercising his franchise, that he does not favour any of the candidates. Even this decision by the candidate is marked by an ink as all voters are. According to the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961, rule 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."

But, that comes with a baggage.

1. The voter has to be clear in public and keeping the political goons in mind, has to be without 'fear'. This may give rise to violence and bloodshed in the voting camps. Several cases of murder and election related criminal offences are already known.

2. There are very few people who know about this act and hence choose not to go to the polling stations at all to avoid any unfavourbale circumstances, while subtly indicating that they do not like any of the candidates. However, the result may still be surprising as not voting for any candidate may cross the number of votes registerd, which still leaves a probability that one of the latters may still emerge victorious.

However, the best part of this move is that political parties will have to place their best candidate for elections, removing the possibility of having any criminals onboard in the Cabinet.

Anna's 'Napasandi' in 2011

Anna's campaign for 'Napasandi' or 'dislike' to vote for anyone came as a huge reformative proposal. Framed on the same lines as that of Section 49(O), the campaign demanded a 'totaliser' too, which would not reflect which constituency fared the best or the worst, rendering further secrecy to the voters. That way, even the
constituencies would be safe from the biasness of the leaders.

How is 'Right to Reject' different from Section 49(O)

While the 'Right to Reject' can be clearly defined by the elements of SEction 49(O), there is one minute difference between the two. With the introduction of an extra button in the EVMs, the voters can now privately cast their votes, without drawing unnneccessary attention. With the inhibitions gone, they can come to the polling stations without any hesitation.

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