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National Voters Day 2023: History, significance and theme

National Voters Day 2023: History, significance and theme

National Voters Day 2023: History, significance and theme
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By CNBCTV18.com Jan 25, 2023 11:24:22 AM IST (Updated)

India celebrates National Voters Day on January 25. On this day, the nation focuses on creating awareness about the need to take part in the electoral process. This year, the theme of National Voters Day is "Nothing like voting, I vote for sure".

India is the largest democracy in the world. Each vote is connected with aspirations, complaints, and experience. More importantly, every voter stands for a voice that moulds the future of the nation at large. By extension, elections retain a unique position in the country as a festival of public consciousness and vigilance.

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In order to encourage citizens, especially first-time voters, to exercise their right to mark the ballot, India celebrates National Voters Day on January 25. On this day, the nation focuses on creating awareness about the need to take part in the electoral process.
This year, the theme of National Voters Day is “Nothing like voting, I vote for sure”.
History
The observance of the day began as an initiative by the Election Commission of India (ECI) in 2011. The need for creating awareness amongst voters was felt when Ambika Soni, then-Information and Broadcasting minister, highlighted that people who had recently turned 18 (and therefore become eligible to vote) were increasingly indifferent towards getting registered in the electoral rolls. In response, the Union government, under the leadership of the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh sanctioned a proposal of the law ministry to begin a campaign to resolve the issue.
In line with that, the ECI resolved to undertake a nationwide effort to identify all eligible voters who reach the age of 18 on January 1 every year. They would enrol such citizens in the voters' list and provide them with an Electoral Photo Identity Card (EPIC) on January 25 annually.
The specific date was chosen for the observance of National Voters' Day to mark the founding of the ECI in 1950.
Significance
Voting is the largest forum for direct people participation. A higher voter turnout means that more people hold elected officials accountable and that more people have a say in who comes to power. It is important for marginalised communities, especially those who do not have many avenues to lobby for their interests, too.
Observance
To mark the day, the Indian government lays emphasis on identifying eligible voters, encouraging people to vote, and conveying to citizens the safety and efficacy of the electoral process. The government also doles out National Awards to district and state-level election officers and other personnel who help the initiative. Often, districts throughout the country conduct contests and cultural activities to spread awareness about the importance of voting.
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