Indian Express

These frontrunner candidates cannot vote for themselves

Many of them are contesting from one constituency, are registered voters in another. Tweet This
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Many of them are contesting from one constituency, are registered voters in another. Many of them are contesting from one constituency, are registered voters in another.

Though a secret, it may be a predictable guess that candidates must be voting for themselves in polls. But the case is not always so. With prominent candidates in one constituency registered as voters in another constituency, there is one vote a few candidates are sure to lose despite all the rigorous campaigning to convince their vote bank — their own.

They may be the frontrunners for Lok Sabha seats in Pune, but Congress candidate Vishwajeet Kadam and AAP candidate Subhash Ware will have no constitutional say in deciding who amongst them wins from Pune constituency. Instead, Kadam — a registered voter from Palus-Kadegaon in Sangli Lok Sabha constituency — will have to choose from Pratik Patil of INC, Sanjay Patil of BJP, Samina Khan of AAP, besides others. Majority of his family members, including father Patangrao Kadam, will thus be mute spectators as Pune electorate decides the fate of his son.

But irrespective of whether “Pune born and raised” Kadam will make a wise voter in Sangli, his party members are convinced that he is the right candidate for Pune. “The Representation of Peoples’ Act does not specify that a candidate has to be a registered voter in the constituency he is contesting from,” said Ramesh Iyer, general secretary and spokesperson, INC.

Ware — AAP’s face in Pune — on the other hand is a registered voter in part no 206 in Shirur constituency and thus may have to choose between Shivajirao Adhalrao-Patil of Sena- BJP, Ashok Khandebarad of MNS, Sopan Nikam of his own party besides others. Predictably thus, according to Ware, the voter, people are fed up of the working style of Adhalrao-Patil, the sitting MP in Shirur. “I have known Nikam and his work over years and I am sure he will provide a better substitute to Adhalrao-Patil. Though I am a candidate for Pune, we are campaigning for Nikam in Shirur,” Ware said, clarifying his commitment to the party even as voter.

While the city has its own list of Independents who are registered as voters in as far as Mumbai, the phenomenon is not just limited to Pune Lok Sabha seat. One of the most significant import from Mumbai is NCP’s Maval candidate Rahul Narwekar, who votes in Colaba Assembly constituency in Mumbai.

Mahadev Jankar, the BJP-Sena-RPI supported candidate, supposedly the most significant amongst Supriya Sule’s opponents in Baramati constituency, will be voting for Satara LS seat and will not be able to add the benefit of his own vote to his share of votes as candidate.

AAP’s Baramati candidate Suresh Khopade too will be voting in Shirur. And while he is confident of his win in Baramati constituency due to his “own work more than the party’s image”, as a voter Khopade feels his fellow candidate Sopan Nikam in Shirur continued…

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