Mandya: The Mandya district returning officer (DRO) is embroiled in a fresh controversy over the allotment of serial number one in the ballot sheet to Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy’s son, Nikhil, who is contesting from the constituency this Lok Sabha poll.
BSP candidate for Mandya, Narayanaswamy met the deputy commissioner and DRO, N Manjushree and Chief Electoral Officer, Sanjiv Kumar on Saturday to complain that Mr Nikhil Kumaraswamy had been placed at number one, although under the rules his name should appear after his on the ballot paper.
Going by a senior officer of the State Election Commission, the serial number on the ballot paper is allotted both in alphabetical order and in the order of national parties, regional parties and independent candidates. As the BJP and Congress have not fielded candidates from Mandya this poll, the BSP is the next national party in the constituency and its candidate, Narayanaswamy should have been allotted serial number one as the second letter of his name is ‘A’, and Mr Nikhil’s is “I,” he explains.
“The DRO has promised to fix the problem. If she doesn’t, I will move the Election Commission of India since my party is the third biggest in the country,” Mr Narayanswamy warned.
Mr Kumaraswamy, however, defended his son getting serial number one on the ballot sheet, arguing it was ‘technically’ correct and said those who had a problem with it were free to move the court.
Meanwhile, Ms Sumalatha Ambareesh has been given serial number 20 in the ballot sheet, causing her supporters much heartburn. Their only solace is that the sheet also carries a picture of every candidate and hope this will help voters identify her despite the presence of three other women candidates with similar names in the constituency.
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