Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi.
Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi.

Presidential election: Over 99% polling recorded across the country

New Delhi, July 18, 2022

More than 99 per cent voting was recorded on Monday in the polling to elect the new President of India in which the electoral college had to choose from two candidates -- the ruling BJP-led NDA's Droupadi Murmu and the joint Opposition nominee Yashwant Sinha.

The five-year term of President Ram Nath Kovind is due to end on July 24 and, as per Article 62 of the Constitution of India, an election to choose his successor is required to be completed before the expiration of the term.

Polling was held between 10 am and 5 pm at polling booths set up in Parliament here and in the premises of 30 State Legislative Assembies across the across the country.

"As per reports being received, out of a total of 771 Members of Parliament entitled to vote (5 vacant) and similarly out of total 4025 Members of the Legislative Assemblies entitled to vote (6 vacant and 2 disqualified), over 99% cast their votes today," a press release from the Election Commission of India (ECI) said.

The release also said that 100% voting by MLAs was reported from Chattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Puducherry, Sikkim and Tamil Nadu.

The election to the office of the President of India, which is the highest elective office in the country, concluded successfully in free, fair and transparent manner, the Commission said.

As per Article 54 of the Constitution, the President of India is elected by the Members of an Electoral College consisting of the elected members of both Houses of Parliament, and the elected members of the Legislative Assemblies of all States [including National Capital Territory of Delhi and the Union Territory of Puducherry]. The Members nominated to either House of Parliament or the Legislative Assemblies of States are not eligible to be included in the Electoral College.

Under Rule 40 of the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Elections Rules, 1974, the Election Commission of India is required to maintain a list of members of the Electoral College. The list contains the names of elected members of the Rajya Sabha, Lok Sabha and the elected members of the Legislative Assemblies of States, NCT of Delhi and UT of Puducherry, in that order.

Two members -- Anant Kumar Singh and Mahendra Hari Dalvi -- were not eligible to vote in the election today, owing to disqualification under Section 8 of R.P. Act, 1951 subsequent to judgement of competent court. Further, there are 5 vacancies in Rajya Sabha and 6 vacancies in State Legislative Assemblies. Therefore, there were a total of 4796 electors in the list of Electoral College for this Presidential Election to participate in the election.

Members of Parliament voted in New Delhi and the members of the State Legislative Assemblies, including the members of the Legislative Assemblies of NCT of Delhi and Union Territory of Puducherry, voted at the place fixed in each Legislative Assembly. However, facilities were also provided by the Commission for any Member of Parliament/Member of Legislative Assembly to vote at a place of poll setup other than their own. Accordingly, 44 MPs were permitted to vote at State Headquarters, 9 MLAs at Parliament House and 2 MLAs in other State Headquarters.

Two COVID-19 positive electors cast their vote at Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly and one COVID-19 positive Member of Parliament chose to cast his vote at Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

According to Article 55 (3) of the Constitution, the election to the Office of President of India is held in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote and the voting at such election is by secret ballot. The Constitution (Eighty-fourth) Amendment Act, 2001 provides that until the relevant population figures for the first census to be taken after the year 2026 have been published, the population of the States for the purposes of calculation of value of votes for the Presidential Election shall mean the population as ascertained at the 1971 Census.

The value of votes of the elected members of State Legislative Assemblies and both Houses of Parliament is governed by Article 55(2) of the Constitution. The total value of votes for MLAs for 16th Presidential Election is 543,231. The total value of votes for MPs is 543200. The total value of vote of electors for the Presidential Election, 2022 is 1,086,431.

The Secretary General of the Rajya Sabha is the Returning Officer for the election.

The last Presidential election was held on July 17, 2017 and the result was announced on July 20, 2017.

Kovind, the candidate of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance, had defeated former Lok Sabha Speaker and Congress leader Meira Kumar, the Opposition candidate.

Kovind, 76, had before that served as the Governor of Bihar from August 16, 2015 to June 20, 2017. He was a member of the Rajya Sabha from April 3, 1994 to April 2, 2006.

The Commission has made special security arrangements to bring the 30 polled ballot boxes from the States to Parliament House in Delhi, the place of counting of votes, by July 19.

Counting of votes will be taken up at 1100 hours on July 21.

NNN

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