Wednesday, 22 November, 2017

MPs, MLAs vote to elect 14th President of India

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Terence Owen | 17 July, 2017, 14:36

The Election Commission has permitted 14 Rajya Sabha and 41 Lok Sabha members to vote in the Assemblies for the presidential election, while five MLAs will vote in Parliament on Monday. The green ballot papers are for the MPs, and the pink ones are for the MLAs. On July 23, a special farewell will be held in Parliament for President Pranab Mukherjee. "When member come out of voting chamber special pen will be taken back by polling staff and would be handed over his/her pen if he/she was carrying", the note added.

"Before entering the voting chamber, a polling staff will collect personal pens from the voters and hand over the special pen to mark their vote on the ballot paper", an EC official told NDTV.

Announcing the schedule of the election, the EC made it clear that use of any other pen could lead to invalidation of the vote at the time of counting under Presidential and Vice-Presidential Elections Rules, 1974.

The poll panel has also prepared special posters for dos and donts so as to "ensure peaceful poll".

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There is a straight fight for the top constitutional post between NDA candidate Ramnath Kovind and Opposition nominee Meira Kumar.

The President is chosen by an electoral college comprising all the MPs and MLAs in the country, with weighted votes apportioned. The Election Commission (EC) has appointed several observers to invigilate the conduct of elections. There are a total of 32 polling stations, including one at Parliament House and one each at all the state legislative assemblies.

Once the voting process is over, the ballot boxes will be taken to Delhi under tight security. Out of the 245 sanctioned strength of MPs in the Rajya Sabha 12 of them are nominated by the president, thus the total number of Rajya Sabha MPs counted for presidential election comes at 233. Three MPs – Badruddin Ajmal, Siraj Uddin Ajmal and Radheshyam Biswas – will cast their votes in the State Assembly.

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