Election Commission of India (ECI), Elections, India, Stories

What do alphabets ‘E’, ‘S’, ‘Q’, ‘R’, ‘M’ on the Electoral Roll indicate?


 In any electoral roll released in an election year, certain entries are prefixed with alphabets ‘E’, ‘S’, ‘Q’, ‘R’, ‘M’. But what do these alphabets indicate?


During an election year, the Election Commission of India (ECI) publishes the final electoral roll.  The roll contains the names of registered electors (voters) assembly constituency wise. Along with the names of registered electors, the roll also contains names of deleted voters prefixed with the alphabets ‘E’, ‘S’, ‘Q’, ‘R’, ‘M’. What do these alphabets on the electoral roll indicate?

What is an ‘Electoral Roll’?
An electoral roll is a list of all eligible citizens who are entitled to cast their vote in an election. The electoral rolls are prepared Assembly Constituency (AC) wise. An electoral roll for any Assembly Constituency is subdivided into parts corresponding with the polling booths. Usually, each part should not have more than 1400 electors in urban area and 1200 electors in rural area as per the guidelines of the ECI.  The polling booths are so set up that no voter should ordinarily travel more than 2 kms to reach the polling booth. Normally, one part corresponds to one polling booth.Electoral Roll alphabets_Electoral Roll TelanganaThe electoral roll has details of the elector (voter) like his Electors Photo Identity Card (EPIC) No, Name, Gender, Age & Address.Electoral Roll alphabets_OU

Who can register as an Elector (Voter)?
On the basis of provisions in the Representation of the People Act, 1950, a person applying for enrolment in electoral roll must fulfill the following conditions .

  • Must be a citizen of India
  • Must not be less than 18 years of age on the qualifying date (qualifying date is 1st January of the year in which the electoral roll has been prepared or revised and finally published)
  • Should be ordinarily resident in the constituency. Currently, there is no minimum period for determination of ordinary residence. The electoral registration officer can determine whether one is ordinarily resident or not.

A person shall be disqualified for registration in an electoral roll, if

  • He/she is not a citizen of India or
  • He/she is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court or
  • For the time being disqualified from voting under the provisions of any law relating to corrupt practices and other offences in connection with election

The following are the major forms used for addition/correction to an electoral roll.

  • Form 6:      Application for new enrollment/shifting from one AC to other AC
  • Form 6A:   Application for addition in respect of NRIs (Overseas electors)
  • Form 7:     Application for objecting inclusion or seeking deletion of existing entry
  • Form 8:     Application for correction
  • Form 8A:  Application for transposition/ shifting within the same AC

What do the alphabets ‘E’, ‘S’, ‘Q’, ‘R’, ‘M’ on the electoral roll indicate?
In any election year, the authentic copy of the electoral roll contains names of the registered electors as well as the details of the deletions. The deletions are ‘struck- through’ in the mother roll (basic draft) by ECI software. In case of photo-roll the word “DELETED” would be imprinted diagonally across the elector’s box to indicate that the entries have been deleted.Electoral Roll alphabets_Electoral Roll alphabetsThe reason for deletion is prefixed against the serial number of each deleted entry in the supplement roll.  The alphabets prefixed against the serial number indicate the following

  • E – Expired
  • S – Shifted
  • Q – Disqualified
  • R – Repeated
  • M – Missing

Electoral Roll alphabets_Prefixes 1

Electoral Roll alphabets_Prefixes 2

The reasons for deletion can be helpful to file objections or register a grievance with the ECI.


About Author

Rakesh has been working on issues related to Right to Information (RTI) for a decade. He is a Data/Information enthusiast & passionate about Governance/Policy issues.