Kerala govt asks Centre, Election Commission to enable online voting for non-residents

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala government on Tuesday wanted the Centre and Election Commission of India to take necessary steps to enable Non-resident Keralities to exercise their votes ‘online’ during the Assembly polls next year.

Replying to a calling attention on the issue in the House, State Minister for Non-Resident Keralites Affairs KC Joseph said the state government was ready to extend all support for enabling online voting facility to expatriates from Kerala working in different countries.

He said it was impractical for every diaspora to be present on the voting day in the state for voting and so, “state is for extending a facility to NRKs to exercise their franchise from the country of their employment itself.” The state would take up this matter with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Election Commission of India, he said, adding, the state wanted online facility at least for elections to the state Assembly.

Stressing the important role played by NRKs for the economic and social development of the state, Joseph said as per the latest estimate, total NRK remittance to the state would come to the tune of more than Rs 1.9 lakh crore.
PA Ubaidulla (IUML), who took up the matter, said as NRKs played a vital role in the state’s development, they should be given an opportunity to decide on its political future.