A post delineating religion-wise vote share of different political parties in the recent West Bengal assembly elections is being widely shared on social media platforms attributing these statistics to the ECI. Through this article, let’s fact-check the claim made in the post.
Claim: Religion wise vote share statistics of different political parties in recent West Bengal assembly elections, as released by ECI.
Fact: Election Commission of India or State Election Commissions would never distinguish voters based on religion or caste. The Election Commission also never discloses results on the basis of religion or caste since it is a secret ballot. The information provided in the post is not released by ECI. Hence the claim made in the post is FALSE.
Before commencement of any election, the Election Commission of India (ECI) or for that matter any State Election Commission regardless would release data related to the total number of voters in each constituency. In this information, the ECI would only distinguish the electorate based on gender. Data related to the total electorate regarding the recent assembly election in West Bengal can be seen here.
The Election commission would also release information related to the total number of voters in each polling station in the form of electoral rolls. Even this information distinguishes the total electorate based on gender but not on any other factor.
The ECI would also release information related to total voter turnout, gender-based turnout. The ECI would also release data related to votes secured by each candidate in each polling station. However, this data does not have any caste or religion based information. We follow a secret ballot system which means that the voter’s choice is a secret and cannot be known by anyone. Hence nobody including the ECI would have the information on any basis except the total votes. Information related to vote share of contesting candidates for each polling station of the 2016 elections in West Bengal can be seen here for reference.
As far West Bengal general election is concerned, the election commission has only provided information related to party wise vote share, constituency-wise vote share of each contesting candidate and constituency-wise trends. Information related to vote share of each candidate in each polling station is not yet released. Finally, from all these, we can infer that the data provided in the post is not provided by the ECI and that it is wrongly attributed to the ECI. Information related West Bengal election can be seen here and here.
To sum it up, the Election commission of India never discloses results on the basis of religion or caste since it is a secret ballot. The information provided in the post is not released by ECI.