February 23, 2017 5:13:15 am
At the 2017 civic elections, residents had to not just ensure that they voted for the right candidate, but also that the ink on their finger stayed on. An electoral routine followed by all municipal corporations across the country, the ink is meant to mark completion of the voting process by a citizen and, most importantly, to ensure that an individual does not vote more than once. But, at some polling booths in the city, the ‘indelible’ ink was coming off after a simple handwash or scrubbing.
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Soon, social media was abuzz with posts and exchanges of messages on the “vanishing” ink. Jyoti Rao, a professor who voted from Panel 20 Sant Tukaram Nagar, said, “I saw someone’s post online about the ink coming off and checked it myself. A little handwash and the mark was coming off.”
Gauri Sahasrabuddhe too, experienced the same thing while performing her daily chores. “In the afternoon, when I came back from voting, I went about my daily routine of washing, sweeping and mopping. Suddenly, I realised that the ink had come off completely from the nail and the remaining stain on the skin was fading away,” said the voter from Panel 1.
Another resident of Baner, DVR Rao, had a similar experience after someone told him that the ink wipes off completely from the nail.
According to Sudarshan Nashikrao Jagadale from Panel 9, Balewadi, such incidents can act as a deterrent for the voting process. “I am a society chairman and I encouraged all the residents in my society to cast their vote. But, a blunders, such as this, can make us lose faith in the system and discourage people from voting,” he said.
While there were some who managed to scrub off the ink on the voting day itself, people like Revati Bhamare realised it the next day. “While bathing in the morning, the ink came off with just light scrubbing. Probably, had I rubbed my finger yesterday, it would have come off then as well,” said the voter from Baner.
Deputy Commissioner Satish Kulkarni, meanwhile, said, “After receiving complaints about the ink getting washed off, we tried it as well but nothing happened, the ink remained. The ink used at the voting booths is the same quality, that is used across all corporations and zilla parishads.”
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