Himachal Lok Sabha polls: NOTA top pick after Cong, BJP, all BSP candidates lose deposit - Hindustan Times
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Himachal Lok Sabha polls: NOTA top pick after Cong, BJP, all BSP candidates lose deposit

By, Dharamshala
Jun 08, 2024 05:36 PM IST

NOTA was first introduced in 2013 in the country and gives an option to voters to reject all candidates contesting from a constituency

The electoral battle in Himachal has remained largely bipolar, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress dominating the contests. Looking to make inroads, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) fielded candidates on all four seats only to face a drubbing failing to even match the None of The Above (NOTA) figures.

The vote share of all four BSP candidates added up to a paltry 21,404 votes (0.52%), even lower than NOTA’s 23,125 (0.57%). (HT File)
The vote share of all four BSP candidates added up to a paltry 21,404 votes (0.52%), even lower than NOTA’s 23,125 (0.57%). (HT File)

According to the Election Commission of India (ECI) website, the vote share of all four BSP candidates added up to a paltry 21,404 votes (0.52%), even lower than NOTA’s 23,125 (0.57%). All four candidates lost their security deposits.

NOTA was first introduced in 2013 in the country and gives an option to voters to reject all candidates contesting from a constituency.

It was only in the Shimla and Kangra parliamentary constituencies where the BSP candidates managed to get more votes than NOTA. In Shimla, the party candidate secured 6,500 votes compared to 5,930 votes polled for NOTA. Similarly, the BSP candidate in Kangra polled 7,753 votes compared to 6,372 votes for NOTA.

In Hamirpur and Mandi, NOTA polled more votes than BSP candidates. The party candidate in Hamirpur polled 2,758 votes, while NOTA got 5,178 votes. In Mandi, NOTA polled 5,645 votes compared to BSP candidate’s 4,393 votes.

Notably, most of the independent candidates who were in fray also got fewer votes than NOTA in the four constituencies of Himachal.

Mridula Sharda of Central University of Himachal Pradesh’s (CUHP) department of political science and international relations, said Himachal politics has traditionally been a bipartite system.

“It is one of the developed political systems. All the castes and sections of the society already find a space in these two parties and the emergence of a third front is difficult,” she added.

29 candidates lose security deposit

Of the total 37 candidates who were in fray in the four constituencies in Himachal, 29 have lost their security deposits as they failed to meet the required vote threshold, according to the details shared by the chief elector officer Maneesh Garg.

If the candidate gets less than one-sixth of the total number of valid votes cast in the constituency, his/her security deposit is lost. The security deposit amounts to 25,000 for general candidates and 12,500 for scheduled caste and scheduled tribe nominees.

In Kangra and Mandi, eight out of ten candidates in each constituency lost their security deposits. In Hamirpur, ten out of twelve candidates faced the same fate. Similarly, in Shimla, three out of five candidates lost their security deposits.

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