Indian man amputates finger after voting for wrong party

“I wanted to vote for elephant but it went to flower,” Kumar says on one video. (videograb)
Updated 20 April 2019
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Indian man amputates finger after voting for wrong party

  • “I wanted to vote for elephant but it went to flower,” Kumar says on one video, adding that he had not been pressured to cast his ballot for a particular party
  • The lotus is the symbol of the Bharatiya Janata Party while the Bahujan Samaj Party, part of an alliance fighting Modi in the northern state, uses the elephant

NEW DELHI: An Indian man chopped off his index finger in desperation after voting for the wrong party in the country’s national election.
Pawan Kumar became confused by the symbols on the electronic voting machine and voted for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party instead of its regional rival in Uttar Pradesh state on Thursday, his brother told AFP.
Distraught, the 25-year-old Kumar went home and chopped off his finger with a meat cleaver.
Even though votes are cast electronically at polling stations, the index finger of every voter is marked with indelible ink after they cast ballots, to make sure they do not vote again.
“He was very happy that he was voting for the first time ever,” Kumar’s brother Kailash Chandra told AFP by phone.
“But once he realized his mistake, he was so distraught that he chopped off his inked finger.”
“Every time he saw his ink-marked finger, he felt angry.”
Chandra said the family rushed Kumar to the hospital, and videos circulating online showed the first-time voter sporting a bandaged hand standing over the butcher’s knife outside a toilet.
“I wanted to vote for elephant but it went to flower,” Kumar says on one video, adding that he had not been pressured to cast his ballot for a particular party.
The lotus is the symbol of the Bharatiya Janata Party while the Bahujan Samaj Party, part of an alliance fighting Modi in the northern state, uses the elephant. The party symbol is used on voting machines along with the candidate’s photographs.
Thursday was the second day of India’s marathon election which started on April 11 and runs through to May 19.



Ethiopia’s capital to ban motorbikes in bid to curb crime spree

Updated 19 June 2019
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Ethiopia’s capital to ban motorbikes in bid to curb crime spree

  • Addis Ababa Mayor Takele Uma said motorbikes had been used in recent crimes and the city would prohibit them from July 7
  • Takele Uma said the Addis Ababa municipal administration will also impose a ban on trips by most freight vehicles in the city during daytime

ADDIS ABABA: Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa plans to ban motorcycles in the city from July in a bid to curb a spree of muggings and robberies, local authorities said on Wednesday.
Addis Ababa Mayor Takele Uma said motorbikes had been used in recent crimes and the city would prohibit them from July 7 though people using bikes for business may be exempt.
“Exceptions will be made to those conducting licensed businesses with motorcycles as well as those who use motorcycles as postal carriers and motorcycles affiliated to embassies,” the mayor told journalists.
Addis Ababa, a city of an estimated five million, is generally considered safe for residents and foreigners. But a growing number of violent crimes involving suspects on motorbikes or in cars has caused alarm.
The mayor said the proposed ban came after a study of criminal activities in the city found a significant number were carried out using motorcycles.
Takele said the Addis Ababa municipal administration will also impose a ban on trips by most freight vehicles in the city during daytime to alleviate traffic congestion in the capital.