Democratic duty

Braving the summer heat, people of Tamilnadu today cast their votes in 38 Lok Sabha and 18 Assembly constituencies. The Election Commission made enough arrangements to ensure that the polling is free, fair and peaceful. Casting vote is the democratic duty of each and every citizen, and despite a long weekend and amid fears that people would ‘escape’ to holiday destinations and abstain from voting, they were seen in long queues at polling booths right from 7 am.

All those whose names figure in the electoral rolls can exercise their franchise in the 18 April elections. Though voter ID card (EPIC) is a must, one can nevertheless exercise the franchise if his or her name is included in the electoral rolls of the respective Assembly constituency where they reside. One can exercise the franchise by producing one of the following documents announced by the Election Commission as proof of identity at the polling station.

They are: passport, driving licence, service identity card (issued to employees by central/state/public sector undertakings /public limited companies), passbook (issued by bank and post office with photo), PAN, smart card (issued by RGI under NPR), MNREGA job card, health insurance smart card (issued under the scheme of Ministry of Labour), pension document (with photo), official identity card (issued to MPs/MLAs/MLCs) Aadhaar card. Also, for the first time, VVPAT machines were introduced this year, through which people verified their votes. Also, tight security was in place to prevent malpractices. All these things reassured the feel that India is not just the largest democracy, but safest democracy in the world.

NT Bureau