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EC starts striking off names of those holding dual citizenship.

Panaji:Stating that the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Goa, has already begun the exercise of deletion of names of those people from the state electoral rolls, who are holding citizenship of other countries, including Portugal, state Chief Electoral Officer Kunal on Thursday said that related data is being collected from the Office of the Civil Registrar of Births and Deaths as well as Foreigner Regional Registration Offices (FRROs), for the purpose.
“We are also issuing notices to such persons and after due legal process, would delete their names from the state electoral rolls,” Kunal added, pointing out that the office of the Chief Electoral Officer follows the existing law, which clearly mentions sole Indian citizenship as the criteria for inclusion of an individual above 18 years in the electoral rolls. “The moment such people lose Indian citizenship, they lose the right to vote in this country,” he noted.
Kunal, speaking to the reporters, following the launching of the special summary revision of electoral rolls 2017, at the hands of Chief Secretary R K Srivastava in the city said that the Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to focus on Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) from Goa, who still hold Indian passports but are working in other countries. “Such people, who have retained Indian citizenship, would not be granted Election Photo Identity Card (EPIC), but allowed to vote on the basis of their passport, after submitting the duly filled required form,” he mentioned.
Special campaign to increase the enrollment of overseas electors through placement agencies, NRI Commissionerate and labour department would be a part of this endeavour.Earlier, in a presentation on special summary revision of electoral rolls 2017, Dr Y Durga Prasad said that the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Goa, is making all efforts to surpass the 83 per cent voting mark achieved at the 2012 state assembly election, and touch the 85 per cent voting mark, at the forthcoming state assembly election. “For this purpose, critical intervention in enrollment of new voters in the age group of 18 years-19 years, as also in the age group of 20 years-29 years would be undertaken,” he added, pointing out that cleansing of electoral rolls through deletion of duplicate voters as well as shifted and missing voters in the age group of 40 years-49 years, as also 50 years-59 years would be taken up due to which the gender ratio would be narrowed.
The presentation informed that the latest voter number in Goa stands at 10,86,082, of which 35 voters have been registered as overseas voters. It also maintained that the female gender ratio, as per the existing electoral rolls is 1029. It was further informed that the physically challenged persons turning 18 on January 1, 2017, would also be included in the electoral rolls, and facilities such as volunteers and wheel chairs, besides transportation, if required, would be made available to them on the voting day.
Dr Durga Prasad also mentioned that in the age group of 60 years and above, deletion of identified dead voters would be carried out. “A special campaign to increase enrollment of service voters through cantonment boards would further be undertaken,” he said.As per the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, Goa, the draft publication of electoral rolls has started from September 15, 2016, which would continue till October 14, 2016, and during this period the 1,600 booth-level officers will visit houses around the state, revising the electoral rolls. The claims and objections as regards the electoral rolls would be disposed on November 16, 2016, while the final publication of electoral rolls will take place on January 5, 2017.Additional Chief Electoral Officer Sachin Shinde and North Goa Collector Agnelo Fernandes were also present at the launching event. Joint Chief Electoral Officer Narayan Navti compered the event. [NT]

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