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Democracy fails voter from SA

india Updated: Apr 28, 2011 13:44 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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That this election in Kolkata is a watershed is beyond doubt. But what has made it special is the keenness of voters to cast his or her ballot. Even distances as far as South Africa was not a deterrent to the urge to cast one's vote this election.

Meet Shyamasree Mukherjee, 46, a resident of Johannesburg, South Africa. Presuming that her vote could make a difference in these times of change, Mukherjee took the trouble to fly all the way from South Africa to Kolkata. It was a different matter that democracy failed her.

"I came down all the way just to cast my vote. I was so excited. But when I went to the polling station I was shocked to find that my name has been deleted," Mukherjee said.

Married to Susnata Mukherjee, an IT consultant with a South African university, Mukherjee is a homemaker living in Johannesburg for the past one-and-a-half years and has a school going son. "I had earlier cast my vote both in 2006 and 2009 elections when I used to stay at Sakherbazar in Behala. I, however, couldn't make it in 2010 corporation polls. So this time, I made it a point to fly back to India just to cast my vote," she added.

While her in-laws had already received their voter slips and knew their part and serial numbers, Mukherjee who didn't receive any such communication either from the Election Commission or political parties, sent an SMS to the number provided by the EC.