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Jharkhand introduces home voting, wheelchair services for elderly and special voters

Jharkhand's Chief Electoral Officer K Ravi Kumar announced measures such as voting from home, free transportation, ramp installations, wheelchair provisions, and Braille-enabled electronic voting machines.

Edited By: Vaidehi Jahagirdar Ranchi Updated on: April 14, 2024 12:11 IST
Jharkhand polls
Image Source : FILE IMAGE Representative image

As the country gears up for the 2024 Lok Sabha Elections, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has been on a journey to implement some pathbreaking initiatives aimed at ensuring accessibility and convenience for all voters. 

Further, in line with the vision, the Jharkhand election official on Sunday announced the implementation of special measures for over 6.82 lakh electors aged above 80 years and those with disabilities in Jharkhand. 

Elaborating on the details of the measures to be implemented, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Jharkhand, K Ravi Kumar, said that under the motto 'no voter to be left behind', the state has implemented several measures for elderly and PwD voters, which include voting from home, free transportation to polling stations, the installation of ramps, the provision of wheelchairs, and the use of Braille-enabled electronic voting machines (EVMs). 

"Persons with disabilities and elderly voters above 80 years old can avail themselves of the pick-up and drop-off facility as per their wishes. A vehicle at each polling station is being arranged for this purpose. The booth-level officers (BLOs) are compiling a list of voters who want to exercise polling at their doorsteps," Kumar said. 

Furthermore, the election official announced an inbuilt Braille facility in the ballot units this time for visually impaired voters to identify their preferred party symbols easily. "This facility is enabled in all M3 electronic voting machines in Jharkhand. Earlier, there were M2 machines in which we had to paste Braille stickers," he said.

Moreover, in addition to the implementation of the pathbreaking initiatives, the Election Commission has also designed an application called Saksham. The app aims to facilitate requests for pick-up and drop-off services and other facilities on polling day.

"The application also has the feature to register requests for wheelchairs or other facilities on the polling day," Kumar added. 

It is pertinent to note that, among the 2.55 crore eligible voters in Jharkhand, around 3.22 lakh are over 80 years old, while nearly 3.60 lakh have disabilities. This includes around 63,000 visually impaired voters and 45,000 with speech and hearing impairments. Additionally, there are approximately 1.39 lakh electors above 85 years old.

(With inputs from PTI)




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