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Vote NOTA if there's no good candidate, says Karnataka Speaker

Kageri was speaking at an interaction organised by the Bengaluru Urban district administration on election reforms
Last Updated : 01 February 2023, 18:07 IST
Last Updated : 01 February 2023, 18:07 IST
Last Updated : 01 February 2023, 18:07 IST
Last Updated : 01 February 2023, 18:07 IST

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Karnataka Assembly Speaker Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri on Wednesday urged voters to choose ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA) if they do not find any candidates to be suitable.

Kageri was speaking at an interaction organised by the Bengaluru Urban district administration on election reforms, a subject that he has been pursuing.

Kageri said voters must select the best candidates in the election. “If they don’t find anyone to be the best, then they can cast NOTA,” he said.

“My vote is not for sale. This slogan should be a mass movement and everyone should take an oath that they would not sell their votes for notes,” Kageri said. The Speaker’s clarion call came at a time when Congress is seeking action against BJP MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi for saying that he would offer Rs 6,000 per vote.

“When caste, money power and muscle power have become the criteria to vote, only youngsters can bring about change. The mindset of the voter must change,” Kageri insisted. Advising politicians not to offer money to voters, Kageri said they are stuck in a ‘poisonous’ circle. “Even when we visit religious centres, (people) demand money. Instead of asking questions on development activities, people have started asking for sports events to be held and festivals to be celebrated,” he frowned.

Answering one question by a student on people entering politics to make money, Kageri said: “The scenario might change if youngsters and good people come to politics.”

To another question on why political parties entertain corrupt people, the Speaker said: “You people should not let corrupt ones win elections.”

Kageri advised students to file a public interest litigation (PIL) “to try change the law and system” when he was asked about people with criminal backgrounds being allowed to contest in election while they are barred from getting government jobs.

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Published 01 February 2023, 18:07 IST

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