The election fever is back and the entire country is gearing up to elect its MPs. With the Lok Sabha polls scheduled to kick off in less than a month, many are still undecided about whom to vote for.
Some voters are veering towards choosing the NOTA option. Are you one of them? Then read on before you opt for it.
To start with the basics, what is NOTA?
Rule 49-O gives citizens the 'Right to Reject.' Simply put, one can opt for the None of the Above (NOTA) option if they don't have confidence in any of the candidates listed in their constituency.
By choosing this option, one can ensure two things:
i) Expressing their discontent/lack of confidence in the candidates.
ii) Ensuring no one misuses your vote.
You can read more about NOTA here.
Is NOTA a wise option to choose?
NOTA got a fair number of votes in the recent assembly elections. Around 60 lakh people chose the NOTA option during the 2014 general elections. Remarkably, that was the first time NOTA was introduced in the Lok Sabha polls. With the 2019 general elections looming, NOTA still seems to be a popular option for many.
Here's what happens when NOTA outperforms other candidates:
If NOTA receives the maximum number of votes in a constituency, the candidate who received the second best number of votes will be announced as the winner. So, what can be inferred here is that people can give negative feedback on the candidates in a constituency but that will not invalidate the election.
There are some suggestions calling for reelection in case NOTA receives the highest number or a certain percentage of votes. After all, social media discussions already give us space to express our discontent about issues in the country. Would NOTA be any different than that?