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NOTA votes have No Effect on Poll Winner: Election Commission of India

EC on 28 October 2013 announced that candidate with majority votes to be declared elected even if number of electors taking NOTA option higher.

Oct 29, 2013 11:40 IST
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The Election Commission of India on 28 October 2013 clarified that if the number of electors who had utilised the NOTA (None Of The Above candidates) option in the EVM or Ballot paper exceeded the votes polled by any of the candidates, the candidate with the highest number of votes would be declared winner.

The clarification has been issued in the wake of the Supreme Court's direction to provide NOTA provision to voters in the forthcoming Assembly electionsin Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Delhi and Rajasthan.

The Election Commission also made it clear that the NOTA will not be applicable in case only one candidate is in the fray. In this case the candidate will be elected-as per provisions of Section 53(2) of the Representation of People Act, 1951.

Background

The NOTA option was made mandatory by the Supreme Court of India on 27 September 2013 and gave the direction to the Election Commission of India to provide none of the above options at the end of the list of candidates contesting an election in a constituency.

The Election Commission of India ordered on 13 October 2013 the Chief Electoral Officers of all States and Union territories to provide for None of the Above (NOTA) option in electronic voting machines (EVMs) and ballot papers.

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