New revision of electoral rolls on Jan 28th

Election Commission has accepted almost 10 lakh new applications, identified about 12 lakh errors and deleted 65,000 duplicate records. That's encouraging, but...

Subsequent to the judgement on the PIL on December 11th, 2012, the Chief Electoral Officer and BBMP organisations are undertaking intense cleansing activities of electoral rolls of the 27 constituencies of Bangalore Districts.

A few steps:

  • They have accepted close to 10 lakh applications for registration and have restored about 1 lakh voters to the rolls by verifying that the deletions were incorrect.
  • They have identified about 12 lakh instances of errors and have corrected about 80% of them.
  • About 65,000 duplicate records have been identified and deleted.
  • More than 30,600 voters who shared their ID with some other voters are now allotted new IDs.
  • Now, 21 Bangalore-One and 35 Karnataka-One centres provide services related with voter lists. They will also distribute voter ID cards.
  • Voter helpline 1950 is now operational. The centre gets about 100 calls per day.
  • The CEO has proposed to take help from educational institutes and corporate sector to update the voter lists after they are published on 28 Jan.

All these are encouraging actions from CEO and BBMP.

Political Parties do not care. CEO had requested them to help in identifying incorrectly deleted voters. With their network and special privileges, they could have easily contributed. I, too, wrote twice to all the 27 MLAs of Bangalore, Speaker of Legislative Assembly and Chairman of Legislative Council, drawing their attention to the large number of deletions. I requested their help in restoring them. There was no response to my requests. To the CEO, the parties have indicated 196 deletions to be restored. They could identify a mere 196 incorrect cases among 13.4 lakh deletions! Do they gain by electoral rolls that deny voting rights to lakhs even as they bloat the same with fake voters and duplicate entries? Easy to fish in troubled waters.

RWAs have not done any better either. They have given only 57 cases of incorrect deletions.

The quality of product and services from CMC, software vendor to CEO, continues to be shamefully deplorable. And they do not seem to care. Several problems that voters face are in fact created by the software vendor. They are CMM Level-5 accredited, but operating at level 0.

A grumbling lot of BBMP employees who are not aware of the provisions and processes related with electoral roll continue to be rude with citizens. They work inefficiently and also frustrate the citizens.

On January 28th, the CEO Karnataka will publish a new version of voter lists on his website (ceokarnataka.kar.nic.in) and then accept new registrations and requests for corrections till ten days before the last date of nomination for assembly elections due in May 2013.

Action points for citizens:

This list published on January 28th will incorporate major corrections and include voters earlier incorrectly deleted. Look out for your names in the list using the online search feature on the CEO’s website. If you do not find your name, raise the issue with your Electoral Registration Officer, if you have registered. If you are an eligible voter, but have not registered yet, register as a voter.

If you have feedback or complaints, at the CEO Karnataka site, in the top menu bar, under "Citizen Forms", choose "Citizen Services." You can register as a citizen and complain if you have a problem and also give feedback to the CEO. If complaints registered at this portal are not attended to within prescribed time, the issues are escalated.

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