Local Goa News

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

27,000 Goans set to lose voting rights

PANJIM: As many as 27,000 Goans, who have ceased to be Indian nationals and have obtained foreign nationality including Portuguese citizenship, will lose their voting rights. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to delete their names from the electoral rolls.

Speaking to media persons, deputy election commissioner Umesh Sinha said that the names of those who have obtained foreign nationality or are holding dual passports, will be deleted from the voters list during the summary revision, which will commence from September 15.
“We have decided to delete such names. In the past too, we have deleted many names,” Sinha, who is in Goa to review the 2017 poll preparations, said.
Based on data submitted by the Foreigner Regional Registration Office (FRRO), the Goa Chief Electoral Office (CEO) has noted that there are 27,000 Goans holding Portuguese passports cum citizenship and also other foreign nationalities.
“The decision has been taken following directions from the ECI, who opined that as per the Representation of People’s Act and the Election Rules, one has to be Indian citizen to cast ones vote. Also the concept of dual citizenship does not exist in the country,” Joint CEO Narayan Navti said.
Over the years, the CEO has deleted over 8,000 to 10,000 names of Goans for holding foreign nationality.
A three-member team led by the deputy election commissioner was on day-long visit to Goa, wherein a review meeting was held with CEO Kunal and Joint CEO and other officers on the poll preparations. The deputy commissioner was accompanied by the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry.
When asked about the possible dates for State Assembly elections, Sinha said his visit has nothing to do with the poll dates. “I was here to review the preparations, right from purchase and functioning of EVMs, correction in electoral roll, new voters list, etc,” he said.
As per the current final voters list published by CEO, total 10,84,271 voters are eligible to exercise their franchise in the upcoming election.

Herald Goa News

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