Schoolchildren’s letter, appealing to their parents and guardians to cast their votes with the spirit of fearlessness and fairness, is the latest in a series of campaigns launched by the Election Commission to encourage voters. The letter – Palkon ke naam pati (A letter to their guardians) – begins with “Pyare mummy papa aur mere parivar ke sadasya…, aapki chhoti si mehnat mere bhavishya ko kaise surakshit aur ujjawal bana sakti hai…, to aap karenge na thodi mehnat, daalenge na vote es baar…
There is also a format for replying to the letters by their parents and family members saying “We resolved to exercise our franchise in the coming assembly election, and we will also persuade our friends and neighbours to vote. District of education Officer, Dharmendra Sharma told Free Press, “To raise awareness about the importance of casting one’s vote, EC has launched the campaign for the first time in 1500 government and private schools in the city. Another aspect of the initiative is to enhance voting percentage in the state which was 64% last time. We are hoping above 80% this time.”
He said, “For this campaign, we made a Election Literacy Club in every school and two children of class 9, 10, 11 and 12 are its members. They will guide to other children of their class to appeal to their parents and family members to vote on November 28 through the letter under the guidance of their principals and staffs of the school. They children will also have to take sign of their parents and family members and submit it to their class teachers. We have also taken meetings of principals of the schools time to time.”
“We are also planning that the children play the role of conveyor and take their parents and family members to polling booths on voting day. Besides the letter, we also organised various competition like debate, painting, rangoli, mehndi, poster, slogan, dance, drama and song under voter awareness week,” Sharma added.
Subhash Government Higher Secondary School principal Sudhakar Parashar said, “It is very good initiative to create an ambience for voting in society through children. First of all, we made aware to children about the importance of voting organising painting, rangoli, mehndi, poster, slogan, dance, drama, and song under voter awareness week. Now, the children will aware and persuade their parents and family members through letters.”
“Yes, we got a letter from district of education officer in which mention that various competitions are being organised to create awareness for voting under four-day voter awareness drive which began from October 28 at different places in the city,” said Rajesh Kumar Sharma, principal Bal Bhawan School. He further said, “Our students took part in all activities. In fact, they bagged first position in debate and rangoli competition. Besides, they were also made an appeal to their parents and relatives to vote.”