Rule 49-O has been the hottest email doing its rounds in the last couple of weeks. to be specific after the mumbai terror attacks.
I got the mail from more than 50 people and still keeps on getting it. and io’ve seen the same post hundreds of times in orkut communities. To be honest i belived it was a true mail and even posted a topic in an orkut community. But that night when i sat in front of compouter , i observed that the way the emails opf 49-O are coming in are just like the usual chain emails . That made me research on the topic.
First I searched for an e-copy of the constitution of india. and later realizing that i saw the phrase conduct of elections 1961 in most of the emails i searched for it instead of the constitution . and to make my search easier i opted for search only in the gov.in and nic.in domains
And soon I was successfull in getting the e-copy of conduct of election rules 1961 . I got it from the website of Law Ministry . Here is the link to that.
I actually found the rule 49-O stated in the e copy of Conduct of Elections Rules 1961 .
49-O. Elector deciding not to vote.-If an elector, after his electoral roll number has been duly entered in the register of voters in Form-17A and has put his signature or thumb impression thereon as required under sub-rule (1) of rule 49L, decided not to record his vote, a remark to this effect shall be made against the said entry in Form 17A by the presiding officer and the signature or thumb impression of the elector shall be obtained against such remark.
It had nothing saying about the repoll or nothing about the barring of candidates etc. That made me research further on the topic. This time I searched for the counting procedure. so that i can know if the NO VOTEs is counted at any stage. and eventually i reached at the pdf link of handbook to the collection agents
Here in the end i found one column asking the counting agent to write in the number of NO VOTEs as per the rule 49-O. but prioceeding further i understood that writing the Number of NO VOTEs is only to make sure that the total number of Votes tally with the voting slips issued.
And i searched further and found that lots of proposals for Making the NO Votes of 49-O rule countable as it is said in the email forwards has gone to the governnment and it has never been put into action
NOW FRIENDS WE HAVE NO OPTION LIKE NO VOTES AND BAR THE CANDIDATE FROM ELECTIONS . its just another Email hoax.
ALONG WITH YOU I TOO PRAY THAT THE PROPOSAL TO MAKE THE NO VOTE COUNTABLE IS PUT INTO ACTION
LET US ANNOUNCE TO THESE POLITICIANS WE WILL VOTE FOR YOU ONLY IF YOU PROMISE TO MAKE THE 49-O EMAIL TRUE