Since I have turned 18, never ever have I missed the opportunity to vote. Back then, when I had just shifted to Mulund, went all the way to Dombivli, just to cast my vote.
At Mulund, in past 8 years, have voted in each election.
Be it BMC, loksabha or vidhan sabha.
So, I was sure that I will get to vote in BMC elections. So I didn’t check my voter Id in the list, till two weeks prior to the elections. When I did, it said ‘Voter Id not found’. So did for my family. But, then we checked with our neighbours. Strange as it was, more than 90 percent members of our building were missing from the voter list.
So what did we do wrong?
Maybe we assumed that, electoral commission will not come up with some crazy voter list cleansing drive and strip all voters from our housing society. May be we trusted the commission much. We should have checked the voter Ids in December 2016.
We got to know about the situation on 12th of February, and started pursuing the matter with electoral office. We sought reasons from the electoral office for skipping our names in the list and requested them to include our names.
The response we got was: ‘In their recent survey, they couldn’t find residents on the said address. The residents were either dead or had moved to other city.’ I could’ve understood this reason for 2-3 voters, but not for about 100 odd people.
With the straight face they told, you can’t vote in this election. Try your luck in next one.
A lot of voters have faced this issue today. Not finding their Names in voters list.
Although, the electoral office is autonomous, Its working needs to be questioned. Removing registered voters for fun is surely not the way to work.
We have been pursuing our case with the electoral office. Here is the mention in today’s ‘Free Press Jorunal’ about the same.
Moral of the story:
As a responsible voter, it’s our duty to check the names in the voter list, about two months prior to each election. I had to learn this hard way. Sharing this, so none of you will have to.
Though, I feel some changes should be made in registration process, we will have to follow the current process till then.