Kedar’s anti-EVM initiative flops

Nagpur :- The plan of former Congress MLA Sunil Kedar to make the Election Commission of India (ECI) hold elections in Nagpur and Ramtek Lok Sabha constituency through ballot paper has come a cropper with only 26 candidates remaining from Nagpur and 35 from Ramtek. As per ECI norms if the number of candidates from a seat are above 364 then the ballot papers are used as electronic voting machines (EVMs) are unable to accommodate them. Kedar had announced that 400 supporters from each seat would file nominations so that ECI would be forced to dump EVMs.

However, only 53 candidates filed nominations from Nagpur seat of which forms of 27 candidates were rejected leaving only 26 in the fray. In neighbouring Ramtek, 41 candidates submitted forms of which 35 survived the scrutiny. It is clear that elections in the two constituencies will be held through EVMs only.

Sources in Kedar camp said that the figure could not reach 400 because party workers and anti-EVM activists were not ready to pay the election deposit amount. The amount is Rs 25,000 for open and OBC category and Rs 12,500 for SC and ST category. The party workers refused to shell out these sums and Kedar showed no inclination for paying it on their behalf.

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