SBS Radio App

Download the FREE SBS Radio App for a better listening experience

Advertisement
  • A polling officer marks the finger of Indian tribeswomen at a polling station at Pedda Shapur on the outskirts of Hyderabad. (Getty)
Kanchan Rani, a resident of Sector 27 in Chandigarh was ‘shocked’ to discover that her name had been struck off from the voters’ list because according to the electoral records, she was ‘dead’.
English
By
21 May 2019 - 12:07 PM  UPDATED 21 May 2019 - 12:07 PM

In a bizarre turn of events, a woman in northern India who turned up at to cast her vote, at a polling booth in Chandigarh had to give evidence of being ‘alive’ before she was allowed to exercise her franchise in the last phase of Indian general elections.

Kanchan Rani, a resident of Sector 27 was ‘shocked’ to discover that her name had been struck off from the voters’ list as she was ‘dead’ according to the electoral records.

When she walked up to vote at the designated polling booth on Sunday, an election official told her that she could not cast her vote.

“I was told by a poll official, who was sitting outside the voting room, that I cannot vote as I am dead in the records,” Ms Rani told The Tribune.

“When I asked them how they marked me dead, the official said people at my residence told them that I was dead,” she added.

But determined to cast her vote, Ms Rani then approached the help desk outside the polling station. She was eventually allowed to exercise her democratic right after the intervention of a Congress party councillor.

Missing voters:

With 900 million eligible voters and nearly 2,000 political parties, large scale irregularities in electoral rolls are commonplace in India.

Just ahead of the elections, a Hyderabad-based technology company, in its research had found that names of over 120 million eligible Indian voters could be missing from the electoral rolls.

Supplementing the findings of the research were multiple complaints that came to the fore from voters across the country during the seven-phase polling.

Many of them claimed that they had previously voted in the 2014 general elections but this time around their name was ‘mysteriously deleted’ for unknown reasons, while others found they had been struck-off and declared ‘dead’, some were ‘never registered’ and there were also complaints of being ‘wrongly registered’ on the voters’ list.

Listen to SBS Punjabi Monday to Friday at 9 pm. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Opinion: Elections in India and Australia - the saga of two parallel universes
As the citizens of both India and Australia cast their votes, the social, and economic issues at play in both nations are 'not that far-fetched,' writes Sanam Sharma.
How do Australia’s Punjabis see Indian elections?

Will it be Narendra Modi again, or will Rahul Gandhi wrest power from him this time around? And what are India’s top election issues according to Australian-Punjabis? Australia’s Punjabi community weighs in on these issues and more.

Guide to India's general election 11 April - 19 May 2019
The world's largest election is underway in India as 900 million eligible voters are due to elect their representatives in the parliament. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking a second term in what is widely seen as a referendum on his policies in the last five years. Challenging him are the main opposition Congress and several regional parties that are determined to stop his return.