Not So Indelible Ink?: Voters Question EC About Ink Marks Wearing Off Within Hours
When India went for the first phase of voting in 91 Lok Sabha seats spread across 20 states and union territories on April 11, apart from facing malfunctioning electronic voting and paper trail machines and absence of voters name from the electoral rolls, voters from several parts of the country were furious because indelible ink marks (vote mark) on their index finger faded away within couple of minutes of applying it.
The ink marks which Indians used to carry proudly and show off as a matter that they have voted, seem to haven’t lasted for even a few hours on voters’ fingers. Voters took to social media to post photos of them removing the indelible ink mark with nail polish remover. The indelible ink stays on skin for 72–96 hours and lasts 2 to 4 weeks on the fingernail and would not wipe off with any chemical remover. However, this year the ink seems to not have adhered on the nails and skin.
The Electoral ink is a semi-permanent ink which is applied to the forefinger of voters to ensure that a voter can vote only once. However, as inks this time can be easily removed, this is seen as a threat to the voting procedure as person can vote multiple times.
Voters taking to social media to show fading of indelible ink
I voted. I got inked. I did not believe the people who said that indelible ink is washing off. So I tried nail polish remover – and magic – the mark is gone @SpokespersonECI. What’s ECI’s response? pic.twitter.com/S12TKw8M07
— Ritu Kapur (@kapur_ritu) April 11, 2019
Tried to wash off the ink 10 mins after voting and I was able to.. It's a chance for ppl with multiple voter cards(yes they exist) to vote again.. Unfair elections… @PMOIndia #ElectionCommissionOfIndia pic.twitter.com/YeN8y9m6d5
— Pranav Reddy Kandadi (@pranav247) April 11, 2019
What a day. First time I experienced this. The “ indelible ink “ of election commission , goes missing in exactly half hour. Is the election commission letting us down ? #viewpoint tonight 9 PM @CNNnews18 pic.twitter.com/GtwpwU757D
— bhupendra chaubey (@bhupendrachaube) April 11, 2019
Citizens from Assam even accused the election authority to have used stamp pad ink in place of indelible ink.
We all kept saying Democracy in danger at Bengal.But here at Tripura, Tauhar- @ECISVEEP to motivate people to come out to vote turned into massacre of Democracy.The ECI's indelible ink turned out to be simply stamp pad ink.lapses of Security forces & hooliganism.whats goin on? pic.twitter.com/AKuldOde5p
— Chowkidaar Achinta Bhattacharje (@achintabhatt89) April 12, 2019
Just before the election, the Election Commission had ordered 26 lakh bottles of indelible ink from Mysore Paints export at the cost of Rs 33 crore, reported Business Line. This is 4.5 lakh less than previous year.
The Logical Indian hopes that the Election Commission look into the matter and try to fix this problem as soon as possible. Still six phases of Lok Sabha elections are to happen. India’s General Election is considered as the biggest election throughout the world, and issues like these put question mark on the whole electoral process.