ECI walks the extra mile to reach at the doorstep of elderly and PwD voters

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New Delhi, Apr 12, 2024, PIB

In a pathbreaking initiative, the Election Commission of India (ECI), for the first time in a Lok Sabha Election, has provided the facility of home voting for the elderly and Persons with Disabilities in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. Voters above 85 years of age and Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) with 40% benchmark disability can avail the optional home voting facility. Voters in this category have already began casting their votes for phase I and II of polling. This initiative marks a significant stride towards ensuring inclusivity and accessibility of the electoral process and in bolstering democratic participation. There are over 81 lakh 85+ aged voters and 90 lakh + PwD voters registered across the country.(85+ elderly voters exercising vote using home voting facility in Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu & Rajasthan) Chief Election Commissioner Shri Rajiv Kumar along with Election Commissioners Shri Gyanesh Kumar and Dr Sukhbir Singh Sandhu had announced that by giving home voting facility to elders and PwDs, it is Commission’s expression of care and respect towards them and hoped that it would set an example for society to adopt it in day-to-day life.Voters who availed the home voting facility in phase 1 polls have expressed gratitude and satisfaction for the ECI initiative. Voting from home takes place with involvement of a full contingent of polling staff and security personnel with secrecy of voting diligently maintained. With this, ECI has taken another decisive step towards facilitating a more equitable and representative democracy, where every citizen's voice matters, regardless of physical limitations or age.In Churu, Rajasthan eight PwD voters, all from the same family, exercised home voting facility underlining the strength of India’s electoral democracy. In Chhattisgarh, 87-year-old Indumati Pandey and 86-year-old Sonmati Baghel, from Bastar and Sukma tribal districts, exercised their franchise using the postal ballot at home and expressed their gratitude to Election Commission for the facility. In Maharashtra, ECI polling teams travelled 107 kms to provide home voting facility to two elderly voters in Sironcha town in Gadchiroli district, LWE affected area.