Telangana elections: 'Democracy dumped me'

According to unofficial estimates, names of more than 50,000 voters were missing from the rolls in Malkajgiri.

Published: 08th December 2018 10:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th December 2018 10:10 AM   |  A+A-

Voters, whose names were missing from the electoral roll, sitting idle outside a polling booth at Jantha Nagar in Hyderabad, on Friday | Express / S Senbagapandiyan

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Thousands of voters from Malkajgiri constituency were left shocked on Friday morning. Despite having verified through the election commission website and the GHMC mobile app, their names were missing from the voters list in electoral booths. Irked, many denizens staged protests outside polling booths demanding their right to vote. 

 M Narayana Swamy, a 102-
year-old man from Hyderabad,
flashing his voter ID card after
he found out that his name
was removed from the voter
list because he was presumed
dead by the election officials

According to unofficial estimates, names of more than 50,000 voters were missing from the rolls in Malkajgiri. While the numbers were 4,46,875 in 2014, it came down to 3,56,664 this time — less by more than 90,000 voters. Election officials tried to justify such a large discrepancy by claiming that it could be because of people moving out of the area or having died. 

Situation was tense at Good Shepherd school in Anand Bagh. Disappointed voters tried to barge into the polling booth, but were prevented by the police present there. Adding to their frustration, protestors realised that at the same booth, names of two persons, who died about seven years back, were still in the list. 

“The names of my neighbours Kanda Swamy and his wife Anupama Rani, who died in 2011, is still on the rolls,” said EVR Subba Rao, a resident of Sharada Nagar. “I can produce their death certificates issued by GHMC. I found my name in the online platforms and came here to vote, but was denied as my name is not in the list,” he said.  

About 25 voters of Paras Green Apartment in Gowtham Nagar were missing from the list. “I took leave and came all the way from Chennai to find my name missing,” said Vangala JR Praveen Kumar. “My name was there in all the online lists, but it was not found at the polling booth. No election official could clear our doubts,” he said.   

Same is the story of other Paras Green Apartment residents. Guru Prasad Bobbili found the serial number against his mother’s EPIC card on the election commission portal, but apparently there was a different name by the same serial number at St Ann’s School.

‘By denying our right to vote, State has denied our existence’

As many as 400 families belonging to Keshav Nagar and Patrika Nagar, whose houses were demolished by the government earlier this year, found their names missing from the voters list on Friday. Nine months ago, the government termed their houses as “illegal settlements” and  razed them down.  S Narsamma, 
a 35-year-old resident of Keshava Nagar, said, “Our right to vote has been denied. By deleting our names, they have denied our existence.” Another resident, 20-year-old P Hanumanth, said, “I applied on the CEO website thrice for voter ID cards, but it was rejected every single time.” 

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