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India is the largest democracy in the world with 28 States and 8 Union Territories. India conducts more elections than any other country in the world. In the 2019 Assembly Elections, 911 million people were eligible to vote. India is proud of being a Socialist, Secular, Democratic Republic in the World. Ever since we gained independence in 1947, free and fair elections have been held at regular intervals, in accordance with the values enshrined in the Constitution, Electoral Laws and Framework.

Indian Election Commission is an autonomous constitutional body. On 25th January 1950, the Election Commission was created in accordance with the Constitution. India's Election Commission is an independent statutory body in charge of conducting election processes for the Union and the States in India. The body administers elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, the Indian State Legislative Assemblies and the country's President and Vice President Offices.

Different types of Voters / Electors

According to the Election Commission of India, there are 3 types of voters/electors:

  • General Electors – The general public
  • Overseas Electors - NRIs
  • Service Electors – People serving in the armed forces of the country or Government employees serving outside the country

Overseas Electors / NRI Voters

According to the provisions of Section 20A of the Representation of People Act, 1950, an NRI who has settled in a foreign land can register to be a part of India's electoral roll. An NRI Elector is a person who is a citizen of India and has not acquired citizenship from any other country. He is otherwise eligible to be registered as an elector and who is absent from his place of ordinary residence in India because of his employment, education or otherwise is eligible to be registered as an elector in the electoral district in which his place of residence in India as referred to in his passport is.

Until the year 2010, NRIs did not enjoy the right to vote. However, an amendment to The Representation of Peoples Act, 1950 allowed NRIs to exercise their voting right.

How can NRIs register to be included on the Electoral Roll?

  • An eligible NRI applicant, willing to get enrolled in the Electoral Roll, should submit Form 6A to the Electoral Registration Officer / Assistant Electoral Registration Officer of the constituency where his Indian residential address falls.
  • The address on his current passport is taken into account for this purpose.
  • The filled up Form 6A can be submitted in person or sent by post or even filled online on the state’s website for its Chief Electoral Officer.
  • The application form should enclose a duly self-attested copy of the relevant documents. A list of the required documents is given below in a later section.
  • The Electoral Registration Officer / Assistant Electoral Registration Officer of the concerned constituency will verify and process your application.
  • The Electoral Registration Officer shall send a Booth Level Officer to the polling area in question for field verification. Booth Level Officers will visit the applicant's home address given in the applicant's passport. He will verify from the applicant's relationships to check the self-certified copies of documents and give a declaration. In cases where no relative is available or no relative is prepared to give a declaration to verify the documents, or where the Electoral Registration Officer is not happy with the verification of documents by the relatives, the documents will be sent to the Indian Mission in the country where the applicant resides for verification.
  • Once the verification is completed satisfactorily, you will be notified by post on your address in the foreign country given in Form 6A as well as by SMS on the mobile number given in Form 6A. Electoral rolls are also available on the website of the State’s concerned Chief Electoral Officer and can be viewed by anyone.

How can NRI Voters apply for their NRI Voter ID online?

NRIs can conveniently apply for their Voter ID Online through the NVSP Portal. The National Voters Service Portal (NVSP) is a very convenient online portal allowing a number of Voter ID related services for the users. It allows you to apply for a Voter ID, check your Voter ID application status, check your details, request for change or updation of any details on your Voter ID and so on.

You can follow these steps to apply for a NRI Voter ID:

  1. Go to the National Voter’s Service Portal
  2. Create an account for yourself by registering with your EPIC number (Electors Photo Identity Card number), mobile number, email and a password (make sure to follow the password guidelines mentioned on the page)
  3. If you already have an account, you can login with your mobile number & password
  4. Once you login, select the option ‘Fresh Inclusion/Enrolment’ from the left side panel on the page.
  5. It will ask if you are a resident or not. Choose ‘I live outside India’ option.
  6. Choose your state and hit ‘Next’.
  7. The page will open Form 6A for you to fill in your personal details, passport details, address and other particulars.
  8. There is a tab where you upload the self-attested documents for verification.
  9. Once you have filled in all the details, you hit ‘Submit’.
  10. The form will then be sent to the Electoral Registration Officer for processing.
  11. Please note that in spite of filling up and submitting the form online, you have to send all the relevant supporting documents and proofs along with the filled up Form 6A to the Electoral Registration Officer. The address for them can be found on the respective state’s Chief Electoral Officer’s website.

What are the documents required to be submitted by NRIs to get a Voter ID?

  • One recent passport size coloured photograph, duly affixed in Form 6A
  • Relevant pages of the passport containing photograph
  • Document proof for the applicant’s address in India
  • Document proof for other personal particulars of the applicant
  • Page of passport containing the valid visa endorsement

Now, if you are sending these documents by post, all these documents have to be submitted as photocopies, duly attested by a competent authority of the Indian Mission in the country you are residing. If you are submitting the application in person, the photocopies have to be self-attested and submitted to the officer and the original passport and other documents have to be produced for the officer to verify.

How does an NRI cast his vote?

In Person

NRIs are not given an EPIC Card. Their names will be enrolled on the Electoral list and will be listed under a separate section called ‘Overseas Electors’ on the last section on the roll of that particular polling booth of the constituency that corresponds to your home address as in your passport. You can visit the polling booth, produce your passport and cast your vote.

Proxy Voting

The Representation of the People (Amendment) Bill, 2017 was introduced in Lok Sabha in 2018 to allow Proxy Voting for NRIs. As per the amended bill, an NRI can exercise his voting right by proxy in the constituency where the poll is taken. A close relative of the person is usually authorized to act as the proxy and cast the vote.

Are you an NRI voter? Here are a Few Points to Keep in Mind

  • A voter can be registered only for only one of the three vote types – General Voters, Service Voters or NRI Voters.
  • If you are registered as a General Voter, you should surrender your EPIC alongwith submission of Form 6A.
  • When you return to India, you can again register as General Elector at your place of ordinary residence.
  • Please remember that you have only one vote. Accordingly, you should not vote for more than one candidate.

EndNote

Registering for an NRI voter ID is an excellent way to be involved in the democratic process of your home country, even while you stay overseas. Use this guide to register for the NRI voter ID online and cast your vote.

All You Need To Know About Nri Voter Id Card - Customer Reviews

4 / 5 (4 Reviews)
27 Nov 2020

Good website - easy to use,

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