India: Voter ‘Chops Off Finger’ After Voting for Wrong Party




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An Indian voter says he chopped off index finger after realising he had voted for “wrong” political .

Pawan Kumar says he accidentally ended voting for governing Bharatiya Janata (BJP), a video that has gone viral.

He wanted to vote for a regional – but confused by many symbols on voting machine.

Every voter’s index finger is marked with indelible ink after they cast their ballot.

He cast vote on Bulandshahr the Uttar Pradesh. This the phase polling the Indian general .

“I wanted to vote for the elephant, but I voted for the flower by mistake,” Mr Kumar can be heard saying in the video. He is referring to the party symbols displayed on the voting machine next to the name each candidate.

While the BJP’s symbol is a lotus, the elephant is the symbol the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), a regional heavyweight that has allied with two regional parties against the BJP.

Party symbols play a big role in India’s elections because they are easy to identify in a country where literacy is low in many parts. There are also numerous regional parties and alliances, which often confuse voters.

Mr Kumar is a Dalit (formerly known as untouchables) – a crucial vote bank for the BSP.

’s vote seen as important for India’s powerful regional parties, which dominate in their states and are fronted by charismatic local .

The is taking place over seven stages, with votes being counted on 23 May. There are 900 million eligible voters, making this the biggest the world has ever seen.