Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar's wipe off ink and vote twice remark has really got the attention of the Election Commission. Afraid that voters will try hard to con the system and poll twice, the district administration received instructions from the EC asking them to use a permanent marker in the forthcoming elections.
Sharad Pawar made the comment while addressing workers in Mumbai on March 23. File pic
In the 2012, the EC had switched from applying the black mark on voters' fingers from an ink bottle to using a marker. Many voters had complained that the mark was easily removed ('Indelible ink comes off easily after wash', mid-day, February 17, 2012).
Hoping not to have a repeat of that, the EC now plans to ensure that the ink remains intact for a month. District collector Saurabh Rao said that the ink provided could not be easily wiped off.
"During the elections, the ink used will remain intact for a month. This will ensure that no one can cheat by removing the mark and voting for a second time from another constituency."
Meanwhile, the EC also expressed its displeasure over Pawar's remarks but said that it would not pursue the matter.