GORKHA, Dec 10: With the completion of vote counting in Gorkha district under the first-past-the-post (FPTP) category for the parliamentary and provincial elections, rural parts of the district reported higher number of invalid votes. As per the details provided by the District Election Office (DEO), more than 4% of the total votes were invalid in the district.
"More than 6 percent of invalid votes were recorded in Gorkha-1, which is the highest in the district," informed District Election Officer Narayan Sapkota. The total number of votes cast was 63,600 out of which 4,320 were invalid. As per the officers involved in vote counting, most of the invalid votes in Gorkha-1 were from the rural parts of northern Gorkha. According to the political party leaders and locals, ineffective voter education has been attributed as the major reason behind the invalid votes.
Similarly in Gorkha-2, the total number of votes was 60,115 out of which 2,636 were invalid. As the number of invalid votes was low in Gorkha-2 as compared to Gorkha-1, it has become clear that the voter education was ineffective in the rural areas.
According to Chief Election Officer Sapkota, voter education could not be effective in the remote areas as the election officers didn't have sufficient time for educating the voters in all parts of the district.
"It was almost impossible for us to conduct voter education in all places within two weeks," Sapkota said. He further informed that lack of road connectivity and no access to electricity and communication were other reasons behind the invalid votes.
"Different ballot papers, stamps and the alliances forged between parties confused the voters," Sapkota added.