Indian President Pranab Mukherjee yesterday decided not to vote in the ongoing national elections in order to express his “neutrality in the political fray”.
He had completed all the formalities for voting by a postal ballot, thus making him the first head of state to do so, but he decided not to exercise his predecessors.
“To express his neutrality in the political fray, the president has decided not to cast his ballot,” Venu Rajamony, press secretary of the president, said.
Mukherjee had ordered a postal ballot to cast his vote in South Kolkata Lok Sabha parliamentary seat where he is a registered voter. It goes to the polls on May 12.
The decision was taken for maintaining the tradition of most of his predecessors, Rajamony added.
India's national election this year has so far showed a record number of voters' turnout, and is expected to be historic in that respect when the last phase of staggered polls, which had begun on April 7, is held on May 12.