‘Chunav Patshala’ to drive up voter turnout in Thane district

Thane: The Thane district administration and election authorities have undertaken a programme targeted at school students to spread awareness about the importance of voting and increase turnout in the upcoming assembly polls.

The programme, “Chunav Patshala”, aims to increase polling percentage in Thane district in the October 21 polls, collector Rajesh Narvekar said on Thursday.

Narvekar, who is also the district election officer, said under the drive officials will go to schools and explain to students the importance of voting. “They will interact with students and tell them about the process of elections.

This will in turn ensure the students will approach their parents and explain to them the importance of elections and persuade them to vote,” he said.

The drive is part of the Election Commission's Systematic Voters' Education and Electoral Participation programme, better known as SVEEP. "Chunav Patshala" is being undertaken in more than 4,500 schools in the district, which has 18 assembly constituencies, officials said.

According to them, this is perhaps the first time schools students are being roped in the district to spread voter awareness and increase turnout at polling booths.

Just 49 per cent of Thane's electorate had exercised their franchise in the Lok Sabha polls held in April this year.

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