Dehradun, January 24
Voters would be able to record the option of “none of the above candidates” by filing the register kept at the poll booths. Chief Electoral Officer, Uttarakhand, Radha Raturi has said that in view of the Vidhan Sabha elections, the Election Commission of India has communicated relevant provisions regarding electors who decide to opt for the option of rejection of candidates.
She said that Rule 49 O of the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961, provides that the presiding officer can register the entry in Form 17A of the voter by putting his thumb impression or his signature against such remark.
The CEO said that the provision has already been explained during the training of poll personnel. These instructions have also been brought to the notice of all election-related officials, especially the presiding officers and polling officers, during the ensuing elections for strict compliance of the prescribed procedure regarding electors who decide not to cast votes after signing in Form 17A.
She said that the instructions were being issued in view of complaints from several quarters that the polling personnel were not aware of the procedure in this regard, resulting in confusion in the polling station and inconvenience to the electors.
Raturi said that the commission had directed that the number of electors who decided to opt for the option of “none of the above,” invoking the provisions of the said Rule 49 O should be compiled for record purposes. The figures regarding the number of such electors will be indicated in Form 17C (Account of votes recorded).