Prime Minister, Narendra Modi and Congress leader, Sonia Gandhi made last-ditch efforts to convince the Electoral College members, MPs and MLAs on Sunday to back their candidates. PM Modi said that a consensus nominee would have been better.
However, he praised the “high level of dignity” maintained by both sides during the campaign. There was no ill will shown and foul language used, he said. He urged all political parties to ensure that everyone votes and no vote are wasted.
Sonia described Meira Kumar’s bid as a fight against a “narrow-minded, divisive and communal vision”.
The Electoral College members have been barred from carrying personal pens inside voting chambers in a bid to avoid any controversy. They will mark their ballot with a specially-designed marker.
Serial-numbered pens have been supplied by the EC. “Before entering voting chambers, polling staff will collect personal pens from the voters and hand over the special pens to be returned later,” an EC official told reporters.
EC has also prepared posters carrying dos and don’ts for the voters. It has warned against any whip or directive by political parties to their members to vote in favour of any particular candidate.
As it is a secret ballot, the voters should not reveal whom they have voted for. While green-coloured ballot papers will be for MPs, pink ones for MLAs.