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Elections 2024: What Makes Voter Ink So Difficult to Remove?

Elections 2024: The voter ink or the indelible ink can stay on a voter's finger anywhere between 2 to 30 days. Here's what it is made of!

Elections 2024: What Makes Voter Ink So Difficult to Remove?

With the beginning of the 2024 Lok Sabha election, here is a mind-boggling fact for you. Have you ever wondered why the voter ink stays for so long? 

The purple colour ink that is put on a person’s finger once they have voted is made up of three elements — chemicals, dyes, and a special compound silver nitrate. The ink is applied on the finger to avoid duplication of votes.

Once the ink touches the surface of our skin, the silver nitrate reacts with the natural salts in our body and turns into silver chloride. This reaction happens in just 40 seconds! Once the silver chloride is formed, it can’t be washed away with water and can remain on the skin for 2 to 30 days. 

The amount of silver nitrate in the ink is between 7 to 25 percent but the exact amount is never revealed by the government. Also known as the indelible ink, it was first made by the National Physical Laboratory in Delhi. 

The sole manufacturer of the ink has been Mysore Paints and Varnish Limited. According to a report in The Times of India, the Election Commission has ordered more than 26 lakh vials for the election season.

The report states that a single vile of 10 mg can cover as many as 700 voters. A report by First Post states that the cost of buying this ink is Rs 55 crore. 

(Edited by Padmashree Pande)

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