The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved a proposal to declare January 25 each year as ‘National Voters’ Day’, beginning from 2011.
The proposal includes providing the voters a badge with its logo and the slogan “Proud to be a voter – Ready to vote”.
The Constitution (Sixty-first Amendment) Act, 1988 was enacted to amend article 326 of the Constitution lowering the voting age from 21 years to 18 years so as to provide the unrepresented youth of the country an opportunity to give vent to their feelings and help them become a part of the political process.
It has been noticed that the new voters (over 18 years of age) are not getting enrolled in the electoral roll in a big way year after year.
In certain cases, the level of their enrolment is as low as 20 to 25 per cent.
In order to effectively deal with this problem, the Election Commission has decided to take up a vigorous exercise to identify all eligible voters attaining the age of 18 years as on January 1 of every year, in each of the 8.5 lakh polling station areas of the country.
Such eligible voters shall be enrolled on time and handed over their Elector Photo Identity Card (EPIC) on the 25lh January every year at a brief felicitation to be organised in each polling station area.
This initiation is expected to give the youth a sense of responsible citizenship, empowerment, pride and participation and inspire them to exercise their newly acquired franchise, when occasion arises.