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Kiran Mazumdar Shaw says mother's name deleted from electoral roll; issue of missing voters impacts diverse social groups

Four days before voting in the first phase of the Lok Sabha poll begins, Biocon chairperson Kiran Mazumdar Shaw tweeted about her mother’s name being deleted from the electoral rolls without ‘verification’.

Incorrect deletion from electoral rolls is an issue that many face across the country.

Janata Dal (Secular)’s national general secretary Justice (retd) BG Kolse Patil, citing the findings of a survey conducted by the Missing Voter App, said in March that names of nearly 40 lakh voters in Maharashtra have gone missing from the voters' list as part of a "conspiracy hatched by the BJP" for political gains. "17 lakh voters are Dalits, while 10 lakh are Muslims," Kolse-Patil said.

The survey also claimed that names of approximately 12.7 crore voters in the country, including three crore Muslims, has gone missing from the voters' list.

According to data compiled by the Centre for Research and Debates in Development Policy (CRDDP), of the total number of people whose names are missing from electoral rolls, more than three crore are Muslim voters and four crore Dalit voters, a report in The Hindu said.

The issue of deletion from voters’ list has also impacted about 4 lakh women working in the armed forces and security organisations, a Business Standard report said. Only three percent of the 1.7-million-strong service electorate comprises of women. Their share till 2017 was 30 percent. Officials aware of the development said, “The EC, after realising that women from the armed and security forces are not casting their vote in successive elections, decided to prepare its list de novo (anew)”.

Residents of Gujarat also suffered the same woes when citizens who applied for changes in address or photograph in their Voter ID card during camps by the EC found mistakes in their new cards, according to an Ahmedabad Mirror report. While one woman’s card had the photo of another woman and her name misspelt and mentioned in place of her father’s name, a Kudasan resident’s updated Voter ID card was sent to a wrong address in Kalol.

What makes it more difficult for complainants to get their issues resolved is the EC’s 1950 helpline. Vadaj resident Dilip Patel said, "I voted in the Assembly elections in 2017. This time, however, not only is my name missing from the electoral roll, but also those of my family members. This is a serious issue and when we call the helpline, there's no one to receive it."

Your guide to the latest election news, analysis, commentary, live updates and schedule for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on firstpost.com/elections. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram or like our Facebook page for updates from all 543 constituencies for the upcoming general elections.

Updated Date: Apr 07, 2019 18:48:28 IST

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