On the eve of the assembly polls in Haryana, actor and activist Mangal Dhillon urged the people to use the ‘none of the above’ (NOTA) button on the electronic voting machine (EVM) if they did not find any political candidate with a clean image.
Dhillon, who was here to stage a play, ‘Theater Wala Pagal Hai’, which had to be cancelled due to heavy rain, said NOTA could become an important tool to make political parties field honest candidates. “NOTA should be used as a tool to empower voters against corrupt and inefficient politicians. People should look for candidates with impeccable integrity, or use NOTA in large numbers,” he told HT.
Dhillon said it was unfortunate that elections in Haryana and other north Indian states were still contested on caste. He said he had worked in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh “to sensitise voters against caste politics”.
“I known it is very challenging task but I am doing my bit an activist. People should be educated that voting for a candidate on the ‘caste factor’ would not resolve any of their issues,” he said. “While the core issues of development are limited to public speeches, political parties in Haryana have prepared their electoral strategies on caste factors. It is a very dangerous trend, but no one takes serious note it.”
Dhillon, who briefly worked with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) before quitting, said he along with others had formed a group named ‘Awam’ to support real political issues. “India needs political parties and politicians with principles. Volunteers of Awam are working to make people aware of their voting rights and demanding corruption-free governance,” he said.