Shashi Tharoor, a Congress MP from Thiruvananthapuram, asked the national election authority, or CEA, for explanation on the voting procedure in the party’s presidential election. The matter was brought up by Tharoor’s team on Saturday when the CEA was outlining the voting procedure to all parties concerned, including the teams of the competitors.
At the meeting, the authority declared that voters would need to put ‘1’ next to the name of the candidate of their choice on the ballot. However, Tharoor’s campaign said that this would cause confusion among voters because Mallikarjun Kharge, his opponent, has a serial number of 1, and the directive appears to give the impression that the CEA is urging voters to support Kharge.
According to insiders, the problem was immediately addressed when the CEA acknowledged the mistake and instructed voters to ‘check’ their preferred option. Generally speaking, voters must register their choices as 1 and 2 when there are more than two candidates in a race. However, because there are only two candidates in this election, the CEA decided against using numerical markers and instead chose a check mark, the sources noted.
The first election to select a party leader in the Congress in 22 years is now taking place. Tomorrow’s elections for the top position will include a contest between Shashi Tharoor and Mallikarjun Kharge. On October 19, a vote count will be place.