App for ‘missing voters’ as India holds mammoth election

App for ‘missing voters’ as India holds mammoth election
Syed Khalid Saifullah's Missing Voter app allows voters to check if their name is on the electorate list. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 10 April 2019

App for ‘missing voters’ as India holds mammoth election

App for ‘missing voters’ as India holds mammoth election
  • An India-based NGO is helping up sign up as many as 17 million unregistered voters
  • The creator says there are a large number of names missing from the list

DUBAI: With India just a few days away from its general election, a non-governmental organization has created an app to help sign up as many as 17 million unregistered voters.

Speaking exclusively to the Arab News, Syed Khalid Saifullah said that his company, RayLabs Technologies, has undertaken the painstaking effort of listing the disenfranchised in the run-up to the elections, which get underway on April 11.

“Millions of eligible voters may not be able to vote, and this may impact the election result,” said Saifullah.

He said that as of March 29, his volunteers across the country had enrolled 41,769 voters. 

Through his company’s free Missing Voter app, a voter can find out whether their name is on the electorate list or not, and apply for a new voter ID online. If the unregistered voter doesn’t have a phone, a volunteer can help them register by going online.

He said it is an example of how technology can aid a community development project and contribute to the nation-building process, empowering those belonging to the marginalized sections of the society, as well as addressing a gap that exists in the system.

Using census numbers as a guide, Saifullah and his team concluded that a large number of names are missing from the list, especially in Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra states. 

Even overseas Indians, especially blue-collar workers working in the Gulf, should to check to see if their names appear on the latest electoral list, Saifullah said.

With almost 900 million people registered to vote in India, it should go without saying that even if one person per household is missing out, that still translates into very large numbers.