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Friday, January 16, 2009

Voting no one

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For reasons unknown, recently there have been series of emails and news items about a clause 49-O in voting rules which permit a person to vote for no one. Contrary to said rumor, voting for no one doesn’t affect election results and merely registers that said person came to voting booth and chose not to exercise the right, rather than not coming to voting booth at all. This articles explains the clause and its implications in great details. Irrespective of this rule though, one of the reasons some people give for not voting is that there is no one worth voting. Some have demanded a right to express disapproval with all candidates, which this clause was not intended to fulfill but can be assumed to fulfill. What few seem to think about is that even if such demand is approved, this will not improve political climate in the country.

Voting out everyone will leave constituency representation-less and country government-less, which cannot be permitted for obvious reasons. Whether we like it or not, we have to, we must indeed, choose least bad candidate because alternative doesn’t even mean anything. Disapproving all candidates will not make political parties conscious of our desire to seek better candidates because ultimately we’ll have to chose one among those who choose to stand. What will bring change, albeit slowly, is conscious voting thinking overall impact of government without recency bias in larger public interest above narrow caste or communal gains. We might as well recognize excuses for an excuse and not justify it.