Supreme Court Scraps Nota Option For Rajya Sabha Polls

Prelims level : Mains level : Paper - II
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Why in news?

  • The option of NOTA (none of the above) will no longer be made available for elections to the Rajya Sabha.
  • The Supreme Court said the option was meant to be exercised by individual voters in direct elections only.

Why NOTA is to be scrapped?

  • NOTA will destroy the concept of value of a vote and representation and encourage defection that shall open the doors for corruption which is a malignant disorder.
  • The introduction of NOTA in indirect elections may, on a first glance, tempt the intellect but on keen scrutiny, it falls to the ground, for it completely ignores the role of an elector in such an election and fully destroys the democratic value.
  • NOTA may look attractive but its practical application defeats the fairness ingrained in an indirect election. More so where the elector’s vote has value and the value of the vote is transferrable.
  • An analysis of the exercise of NOTA in the voting process of the Council of States where open ballot is permissible and secrecy of voting has no room and further where the discipline of the political party/parties matters, it is clear that such choice will have a negative impact.
  • The option of NOTA may serve as an elixir in direct elections but in respect of the election to the Council of States which is a different one, it would not only undermine the purity of democracy but also serve the Satan of defection and corruption.


  • Thus, a candidate after being elected becomes a representative of the State and does not represent a particular constituency.
  • The cumulative effect of all these aspects clearly conveys that the introduction of NOTA to the election process for electing members of the Council of States will be an anathema to the fundamental criterion of democracy which is a basic feature of the Constitution.
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