The Gujarat High Court rejected a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) here today seeking a direction to the Election Commission to provide a symbol for the NOTA (None Of The Above) option and to educate voters about it.
"The petition is devoid of any merit and is hence dismissed," the two-judge bench of the Gujarat High Court comprising Chief Justice Bhaskar Bhattacharya and Justice J B Pardiwala said in the order.
The petition was filed by a Vadodara-based senior citizen Praful Desai who sought a direction to the Election Commission to use some portion of its funds to educate people about NOTA.
Desai had contended in his petition that, "The Commission has to use 27 per cent of its funds to spread awareness among the public for the election. However, the Commission is not using its funds to educate people about the newly added NOTA option."
Desai said he had also filed an RTI application to the Election Commission to find out if the NOTA symbol had been added to the specimen ballot paper or not, but his question remained unanswered.
He also contended that the EC has only focussed only upon a huge voter turnout, but never gave importance to the NOTA option.
"This court may direct the Commission to have a symbol for NOTA in its specimen ballot papers, so that people become aware of the same," his petition demanded.
The court did not intervene in the issue and disposed of the petition after rejecting the litigant's demands. PTI AC PD BA