Over 42,000 votes polled through postal ballot now

Over 42,000 votes polled through postal ballot now

Over 42,000 votes have already been polled for the Assembly elections through postal ballot till Tuesday, said a senior election officer. Though the D-day is on Wednesday when voting will begin at 8 am and go on till 5 pm.

Postal ballot is a system in which the election office sends ballot paper to government employees by post and they return it after voting for the candidate of their choice.

According to Delhi electoral office, a total of 42,936 votes have been polled through postal ballot so far. “Of which 30,000 votes have been cast by civilians and over 10,000 by police personnel,” said the officer.

Rohan Lal Mishra, a government employee who is on election duty, said, “If we do not have this option, we will be deprived of our say in the democratic process.” Mishra has also been on election duty since 2008 Assembly polls.

Like Mishra, many government employees, including teachers, policemen and clerks, who are on the election duty to ensure that Delhi voters get to exercise their franchise, yearn to vote by pressing the button on the EVMs as they get to vote only through the paper ballot.

“I so want to vote on EVM but I have always been on election duty since 2008 Assembly elections. My children tell me how the EVM operates,” said Sourav Jain, a 55-year-old clerk.Then there is another set of people who even miss out on voting through the ballot paper system as they get extremely busy with the poll preparations.

“I couldn’t vote in the municipal corporation election in 2012 as I was overworked. But this election I would want to exercise my right,” said a police constable.

Almost one lakh government employees on election duty are eligible for voting through the paper ballot.

For government officials whose duty falls in their own constituency, election duty certificates will be issued to facilitate them to cast their votes through EVMs.

Arun Gupta, incharge of postal ballots at Delhi electoral office, himself has never missed the opportunity to cast his vote, even if it means through the postal ballot system. This will be the third time he will be voting this way. But he rues the lack of awareness about the system in place among many other employees.

The Election Commission had asked the various departments of the government to create a database of all the employees who will be on election duty so that it is easier to issue voter identity cards to them.

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