Political parties are gearing up to push their demand for making voting compulsory. This comes in the wake of a steady decline in the voting percentage in Maharashtra. Further,the Supreme Court verdict on Friday allowing voters to reject candidates has the parties worried.
The ruling and opposition parties are now planning to present their case before the election commission. Maharashtra BJP president Devendra Fadnavis said,We welcome the apex courts decision. However,if electoral reforms are to be put in place,further measures should be taken to ensure that voting is compulsory. Higher voting percentage will go a long way in strengthening the democratic exercise.
If a party with a mere 20 to 30 per cent votes gets the seat of power,it does not represent the overall state, he added.
In the 2009 Lok sabha polls,Maharashtras polling percentage was 54. In comparison,states like West Bengal (71 per cent),Andhra Pradesh (69 per cent) and Orissa (66 per cent) fared much better. In 2004 LS polls,Maharashtras voter turnout was 54.38 per cent.
NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said,Parties can only launch an awareness campaign but each individual has to understand his or her right to vote.