New Delhi: Nearly 2.5 per cent voters in Bihar opted the 'None Of The Above' (NOTA) button which is placed as the last option on the electronic voting machine.
According to figures made available by the poll body, 9,13,561 voters opted for the NOTA option in the state which has 243 assembly seats.
This is also the maximum number of NOTA votes polled in Bihar till date.
Close to 5.81 lakh people had pressed the NOTA button in elections to the 40 parliamentary constituencies here in 2014. Just 23,000 had rooted for NOTA in assembly bypolls the same year for 10 seats.
Out of a total of over 6.68 crore voters, 56.80 per cent had exercised their franchise, the highest ever in Bihar's history, be it Assembly or Lok Sabha polls.
The 'NOTA' option on electronic voting machines this time had its own symbol - a ballot paper with a black cross across it.
The Bihar assembly polls were the first where the symbol appeared next to the NOTA option on the last panel of EVMs and ballot papers.
After the Supreme Court order in September, 2013, the Election Commission added the NOTA button on the EVMs as the last option on the voting panel.
NOTA was exercised by nearly 60 lakh people in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
Prior to the apex court order, those not inclined to vote for any candidate had the option of filling what is popularly called 'form 49-O'. But filling the form at the polling station under Rule 49-O of the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961, compromised the secrecy of the voter.
Supreme Court had, however, refused to direct the Election Commission to hold fresh polls if the majority of the electorate exercises the NOTA option while voting.