What’s your reason for not voting?

Call it urban inertia or indifference. The official voter turnout in Bangalore’s five constituencies indicate that the two less urban ones were more enthusiastic than the other three (Source: The Times of India, 18th April 2014):
–  Bangalore North- 52%
–  Bangalore Central -55%
–  Bangalore South – 55%
–  Bangalore Rural – 68%
–  Chikkaballapur – 73% .

Age was not an excuse for my grandmother Kalyani Nair (93 yrs) and my grandfather’s sister Komalam Nair (92 yrs). Born in September 1920, my grandma must have voted in the first elections in 1951, but she says she is not sure. My grandfather was what you would call, an astute citizen. He was working in The Survey of India on Richmond Road in Bangalore. He surely would have exercised his voting rights and got my grandma to vote as well. Now, living in Yelahanka with my aunt, both she and the other old lady were got on to the Yelahanka electoral rolls for this election. Mobile and reasonably self-sufficient, they voted in the Chikkaballapur constituency, and they proudly showed me their thumbs when I met them last evening.

“Whom did you vote for?”, I asked.

“It’s a secret, no?”, says grandma, “but I’ll tell you”. And she whispered her secret!

Voting at 90-plus

My grandma Kalyani and her sister-in-law Komalam showing their inked thumbs.
(Pic courtesy: Nagesh Manay)

So why didn’t more people vote?  Here are some reasons.

1. Removed from the voting list. No ID proof enough. Cannot vote for change. Sorry!

PG Santhosh

 My friend Santhosh whose name was struck off the rolls, with all his IDs
(Pic courtesy: PG Santhosh)

2. I went to the booth but the queue was very long.

3. I was late. The booth had closed. Sorry Bangalore.

4. No candidate is good enough. And the NOTA button is as good as not voting because it does not impact the results.

5. A rare long weekend. Going  on holiday.

6. Too old to step out of the house. It inconveniences others.

7. I wanted to vote, but I couldn’t come to Bangalore where my name is listed.

8. I’m 55 and I never vote. It’s a waste of time.

9. I’m an OCI holder now, and though my name is still on the rolls I know I’m not eligible to vote.

10. I’ve shifted my house and my name is somewhere else. Too far to go, especially when it’s a paid holiday.

Some reasons, more valid than others. If you didn’t vote. What’s yours?


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