Shillong, Jan 25: Commemorating the foundation day of the Election Commission of India in 2011, the 11th National Voters Day was observed today on the theme, “Making our Voters Empowered, Vigilant, Safe and Informed”.
The programme organized by the office of the District Election Officer, East Khasi Hills District, Shillong was held in the Conference Room of the office of the Deputy Commissioner, East Khasi Hills District, Shillong.
Deputy Commissioner, East Khasi Hills District, Isawanda Laloo graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.
Addressing the gathering, Laloo said that the importance of the day was to remind every citizen of this country of their rights as voters.
By participating in the electoral process, citizens who have attained the age of 18 play a crucial role in ensuring that the fundamentals of democracy, a government by the people, of the people and for the people, are kept alive.
Adding that the preparation for election is a continuous process, she said that works for ensuring that the electoral roll is proper, enrolment of those who have attained eligibility, creating awareness, ensuring the fitness of polling stations in terms of basic amenities are all year-round activities aimed at ensuring that each and every person who is to play a role comes forward to exercise his/her franchise.
Pointing that urban apathy is prevalent, efforts such as Systematic Voters Education and Electoral Programme are focused at reaching out to young people and as emphasized on the theme of this year’s celebration on the empowerment of voters, the ECI has enabled voters to make informed and vigilant choices.
She also informed that despite the pandemic, East Khasi Hills District has enrolled 18,814 voters for the year 2020-2021, which is a big leap from its usual average of around 10,000 every year.
Representatives from different political parties shared their thoughts on the importance of educating and encouraging young voters to take part in the polling process, the need to increase the number of polling stations and the importance of educating people about their voting rights.
As part of the programme, EPICs were also distributed to new voters.