Nagaland CEO makes arrangements to ensure that ‘No voter left behind’

KOHIMA, FEBRUARY 17 (MExN): To fulfill the commitments of 'No voter to be left behind' and ensuring ‘accessible elections' in the upcoming Nagaland General Election, the Nagaland CEO has provided several amenities in polling stations “so that the rigours of polling processes get reduced and making it a pleasant experience on the day of poll for all categories of voters.”

A press release from the Nagaland CEO informed that effort are being made to provide minimum facilities for the voters in the polling stations like drinking water, electricity, ramps for PwD voters, toilets, waiting sheds.

Sentry passes into the polling station are also being arranged for identified PwD voters. For those unidentified PwD voters, if the produce their Disability ID Cards to the presiding officer, they can be facilitated (such cases can be reported to the ERO for recording later). Passes are also being arranged for octogenarian and older voters, pregnant women voters (if identified by Anganwadi Workers, etc), and women voters with babies in arms.  

Under Rule 49N of the Conduct of Elections Rules 1960, the visually impaired can have one companion to the polling booth to record vote in the machine as per choice, the CEO further informed. The balloting unit of EVM, on the right side of press button, contains Braille numerals (S1 Nos) for visually impaired voters to select their choice of candidate/ NOTA to cast vote.  

The electoral law not only guarantees equality of PwDs but also mandates the election machineries to facilitate their access and participation in the electoral processes within the polling station, among others, like provision of ramps for wheelchair-user voters and parking facilities for the vehicles of the PwD voters at the premises.  

The Election Department has also asked political parties to include in their political campaign manifesto and plan for protection and safeguarding the rights of PwDs and senior citizens and providing ample opportunity for participating freely. The District Election Officers have been instructed to facilitate the special needs of the PwDs and senior citizen voters. 

“This is issued for all stakeholders to comply and the PwDs and Senior citizen voters to come out and participate in this election and make our democracy wholesome and reflective of people's choices and aspirations,” the Nagaland CEO stated.