ELECTIONS, NOTA AND QUESTIONS OF AN ELEVEN YEAR OLD

I was watching coverage of Delhi election on TN news channels this morning when my 11 year old niece came to sit by me. It clearly meant I needed to be ready answering questions that she would be picking up from the content.

I have become used to and enjoy it. Sometimes, there are no answers. Sometimes, there cannot be answers. Sometimes, I don’t know the answers. But, thankfully, most of the times, I am able to answer her to her and my satisfaction.

Sometimes, she asks questions that transcend the age boundaries leaving me thinking for a long time as I know how relevant the question is and how desperately the society needs to find the answer. Today was one such day with the questions she asked. Some of the questions were:

Should anyone who doesn’t find any candidate in the fray worthy go with ‘None of the Above/ NOTA option (yes, she was aware of it thanks again to these rounds of questions and answers) or he should go with the best of the lot?

But if we don’t find anyone worthy, why should we compromise, why shouldn’t we go with NOTA?

What if more people opt for NOTA than any other candidate?

What if all the votes cast in a constituency go to NOTA?

What if all the votes except a small share, say in the range of 5% go to NOTA?

Now, we all who are politically aware have thought over and discuss the first three questions.

But, even the last two are not irrelevant, even if repetitive in tone. And the last three may sound utopian given the state of affairs of the Indian politics of the day, but certainly push us to think.

How would our prevailing electoral system handle such crisis points?

Would the moral constraints give way to the constitutional framework where NOTA gets larger or equal vote share, the second one?

What would happen of Indian politics, Indian society and India if the electoral response gets to these extreme outcomes, the last three?

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey–https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

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