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    HomeTelanganaConsider NOTA as a fictional candidate in elections: FGG

    Consider NOTA as a fictional candidate in elections: FGG

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    The Forum for Good Governance (FGG) in Hyderabad is calling for NOTA (none of the above) to be treated as a fictional candidate in upcoming panchayat elections. They believe this will help prevent the auctioning off of the post of sarpanch. FGG emphasized the importance of making elections fair and transparent, and urged the State Election Commission to issue orders similar to those in Haryana.

    NOTA is a ballot option that allows voters to express disapproval of all candidates in a voting system. It was introduced in 2013 by the Supreme Court to encourage political parties to field clean candidates and improve voter turnout. Despite this, NOTA has only received around 1.5 to 2 percent of total votes in past elections. There is currently no provision for a re-poll if NOTA receives the highest votes.

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    In Telangana, upcoming local body elections are expected to begin within the next few months. In the 2019 Gram Panchayat elections, some villages saw the sarpanch post being auctioned off to the highest bidder, leading to uncontested elections. FGG is concerned that this practice excludes many people, especially those from weaker sections, from participating in the electoral process. In 2019, nearly 16 percent of sarpanches in Telangana were elected unopposed, with many of them participating in auctions to secure their position.

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    Rajesh M
    Rajesh M
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