Largest Democracy in the world considers “None of the above”

via The Hindu

via The Hindu

India would like its electronic voting to include the option to show no confidence in any of the choice on offer

With a view to bringing about purity in elections, the Supreme Court on Friday held that a voter could exercise the option of negative voting and reject all candidates as unworthy of being elected. The voter could press the ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA) button in the electronic voting machine.   

The court directed the Election Commission to provide the NOTA button in the EVM.

“For democracy to survive, it is essential that the best available men should be chosen … for proper governance of the country. This can be best achieved through men of high moral and ethical values who win the elections on a positive vote.” Thus the NOTA option would indeed compel political parties to nominate sound candidates, said a Bench of Chief Justice P. Sathasivam and Justices Ranjana Desai and Ranjan Gogoi, while allowing a petition filed by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties.

Let’s see about mandates when political parties get less votes than the total “NOTA” vote.

Writing the judgment, the CJI said: “Giving right to a voter not to vote for any candidate while protecting his right of secrecy is extremely important in a democracy. Such an option gives the voter the right to express his disapproval of the kind of candidates being put up by the parties. Gradually, there will be a systemic change and the parties will be forced to accept the will of the people and field candidates who are known for their integrity.”

It’s a nice idea, but it just means that the politicians will adjust their methods to get the outcome they are after.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

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