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‘Confused’ Gauhar Khan alleges deprivation of voting rights, vents anger at authorities, only to find her name on the voter list at old address

Election Commission of India has allowed voters to use any one photo identity proof along with their voting slip. It has allowed 11 alternative documents that one can carry along with their voting slip to cast their votes.

On Monday, 20th May, alleged actress Gauhar Khan gave netizens a field day when she went out to vote in Mumbai, which went for polling in the fifth phase. Claiming that the polling officials didn’t allow her to cast her vote using her Aadhaar card, Gauhar Khan vented anger against the authorities. She alleged that things are “very confusing” and “badly organised”.

Taking to Instagram, Gauhar Khan also asserted that she was being deprived of her voting rights, later she posted another story on Instagram to reveal that she cast her vote at some other polling booth.  

According to Gauhar Khan, the confusion happened because her name on the voter list was enrolled at her old address. However, her post is going viral, with netizens trolling and schooling her for her remarks about the Aadhaar card being proof of citizenship. Several others have slammed her for spreading falsehoods and playing the victim when she is not one. 

Notably, it all started when Gauhar Khan came out of a polling booth in the afternoon and started venting anger against the polling officials and accused them of inefficiency. Gauhar Khan stated that she was not allowed to cast a vote even though she had her Aadhaar card with her. She argued that while her name was not on the voter list of that polling booth, she should have been allowed to cast her vote there as she had her Aadhaar card with her, which according to her should have been enough to vote. 

Taking to her Instagram Stories, Gauhar Khan said, “I have an appeal. Why do we have Aadhaar cards if we are not considered citizens enough to vote? Your Aadhaar card is your identity that you are an Indian citizen and you should be able to vote with that.”

Insinuating malpractice and casting aspersions on the preparation of the voter list, Gauhar Khan further alleged that while her name and her family members’ names were not on the voter list at that polling booth, she saw the names of many people who no longer live in the apartment building.

It is important to note that before the start of any election, the polling body carries out extensive exercises to update electoral rolls. This is done because several voters enroll their names at the nearest polling station to their new address, to correct their details, new voters become eligible for the first time, and the names of deceased voters need to be deleted. However, if the voters or local agents/representatives fail in their duty, anomalies such as the names of some deceased voters and voters’ names at their old addresses remain in the updated voter list.

(Electoral rolls are updated from time to time and Election Commission carry out extensive excercise for it. Additionally, voters on their own can use Election Commission Website to find their names in the electoral rolls, make correction, among other facilities provided by the polling body)

In her Instagram story, Gauhar Khan added, “People who have left the building are still on that list. I have seen it myself. And if I, my mom, my husband, everyone is registered on that building…. none of us are there. So how does one vote? We go with our Aadhaar card, Id proof and they say, ‘No you cannot vote.’” 

Gauhar Khan further stated that it makes ‘no sense’ that an Aadhaar card is not applicable in this situation.

Alleging that she and other people are being deprived of their voting right, Gauhar Khan added, “Here literally people are fighting and going berserk over there because they have their IDs but the survey doesn’t have their name on the list. They are saying if you are not on the list then you cannot vote. I think that is the most basic deprivation of your rights to vote!” 

However, Gauhar Khan later deleted her story and shared another one revealing that she was allowed to vote now. She said, “Yes! Finally, I have done it! Humne vote kar diya (We cast our vote)! I want to tell you no matter how difficult it is, it can be confusing. Lekin (But) please guys go and vote!”

She also appealed to voters to find their booths and vote. According to her, she had a very confusing and frustrating time as she and her family members’ name were missing from the address that she have lived for 9 years. Only 1 person from her family had received the voting slip. She then went looking from booth to booth in her area and finally found her name along with her mother’s name at her 15-year-old address. 

An Aadhaar Card is not proof of Citizenship

Several users took a dig at her argument that an Aadhaar card alone should be enough to cast a vote even on wrong/any polling booth, and sarcastically extended her argument to other fields. Several other users slammed her after she deleted her initial story arguing that an Aadhaar card is proof of citizenship and playing the victim when she was not one.  

Responding to her second Instagram story, one user commented, “Behen delete kyu kar di Insta story. Wese modi govt ne Adahar card ko Voter ID se link krne ke liye bhi kaha hua hai, u can do it by yourself from ECI website. Jo apko pyari Congress kabhi na karti coz farzi voters kum ho jate h us se jo ek baar voter id or dusri baar adhaar card dhundte h vote k liye na mile to Insta story dalo.” 

It is pertinent to note that the Government of India, time and again, has made it categorically clear that an Aadhaar Card is not proof of citizenship. Incidentally, this disclaimer is now included on the ID itself.

(Aadhaar card is not a proof of Indian Citizenship)
(The Election Commission has allowed voters to show their Aadhaar card or 10 other IDs in place of voter ID card, however, voters have to ensure that their name is in the voter list of that polling booth.)

However, the Election Commission of India has allowed voters to use any one photo identity proof along with their voting slip. It has allowed 11 alternative documents that one can carry along with their voting slip to cast their votes. These alternative IDs include – an Aadhaar card, PAN card, Driving license, and MGNREGA job card among others. However, voters have to ensure that their name is listed in the official voter list provided by the Election Commission.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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