Congress-led UDF government in Kerala is ready to bend backwards to rope in the state economy’s Rs 1.9 lakh crore cashcow, the NRIs to the voting pool. Hot on the heels of the Bill for NRK (non-resident Keralites) Commission, the state government has set out to urge the Centre and Election Commission of India to enable online voting facility for NRKs during the Assembly polls next year.
State minister for non-resident Keralites affairs KC Joseph told the Assembly that the state government would leave no stone unturned, to enable online voting facility for expatriates from Kerala working in different countries.
Kerala would urge Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Election Commission that the state wanted online facility at least for elections to the state Assembly, Minister said, in reply to a calling attention motion. “Since NRKs play a pivotal role in State’s economic development, it was important that they should get the opportunity to decide on its political future,” he added.
NRI remittances to Kerala have already crossed Rs 1 lakh crore in March 2015, soaring up 17% from the same period in March 2014. The state’s NRI deposits in public sector banks total Rs 64,700 crore, besides the Rs 44,900 crore in the private sector banks. Kerala’s remittance kitty contributes to the extra Rs 11,613-crore spurt in the NRI remittance flow to India in 2015. The remittances are expected to touch Rs 2 lakh crore in the coming years.