Patna: According to Election Commission estimates around 7-8 lakh duplicate voters exist in the electoral rolls of Bihar, Bihar Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Ajay V Naik said on Friday.
This is despite the fact that names of around 3.8 lakh duplicate voters were removed from the rolls before Lok Sabha elections held earlier this year.
"During the last revision of electoral rolls before the Parliamentary elections, around 3.8 lakh duplicate voters were removed. Still, as per our estimates, around 7 to 8 lakh additional duplication exists. That's around 3 per cent of extra electors in the rolls. We intend to remove them," Naik said.
The Bihar CEO was talking to reporters on the eve of the publication of the draft electoral rolls for the 243 assembly constituencies in the state. With this the EC will launch a 'Special Summary Revision' of the electoral rolls with an eligibility date of January 1, 2015.
Youths who would attain the age of 18 by then can contact Booth Level Officers (BLO) between November 1 and December 1, 2014 for the inclusion of their names. They can also directly log on to the EC's or Bihar CEO's website and submit online applications.
New entries, correction of errors in the rolls, updation of database and printing will be completed by January 8, 2015. Final electoral rolls will be published on January 15 and the exercise is being carried out with an eye on the state assembly elections scheduled next year.
Talking about errors like spelling, gender or age related mistakes in the electoral rolls, Naik said an estimated 30 lakh errors remain though around 1.2 crore errors were corrected in the revision done prior to the 2014 Lok Sabha polls. He also added that the centralised database available now will help removing duplication of names, as well as, errors easily.
Naik said the number of polling stations in Bihar has been increased to 62,779 from the existing 59,807.
"This has been done as per EC guidelines of dividing booths having more than 1,600 voters. The number of electors in the draft elector rolls has seen a jump from 6.21 crore to over 6.34 crore," Naik said.
According to the draft elector rolls, there are 3.39 crore males, 2.95 crore females and 1,914 third gender voters in the state.
However, the Bihar CEO pointed out that the gender
ratio in the draft electoral rolls in the state was quite low at 873 female voters for every 1,000 male voters.
"Though the gender disparity in the electoral rolls is being bridged, it is still less than the ideal of 918, which corresponds to the sex ratio of the state," Naik said.
The Bihar CEO said the figures indicate that more men are registering themselves as voters in comparison to women.
He said correction and inclusion works related to the electoral rolls will be facilitated through Citizen Service Centres (CSC), a project initiated by the central government, in all districts of Bihar in the next couple of months.
"We have completed the preliminary preparations and CSCs will be launched in December this year," Naik said.
The Bihar CEO also said the digital signatures of 1,000 senior officers in the state administration have been prepared. They will have to use it to access the EC database and the move will instill transparency and responsibility in their works.