Local businesses encouraging electorate to cast vote

Local businesses encouraging electorate to cast vote

PTI file photo for representation.

Besides awareness programmes by the Election Commission, hotels, restaurants, movie theatres and even educational institutions have adopted a novel method of incentivising voters to perform their democratic duty.

Show the indelible ink mark and avail discounts on ticket fares and school fees.

If you enter the popular restaurant Vasudev Adiga’s after voting, you can show the ink mark and get free coffees. Some others have offered ‘buy one and get one free’, while multiplexes have informed ticket buyers that they will get discounts and free snacks for those who vote.

But the innovative idea is not without its detractors. “On one hand, they ask their staff to come to work, and on the other, they offer incentives to customers to vote,” said Mahesh, a restaurant owner in Malleswaram.

Veerendra N Kamat, treasurer of the Bruhat Bengaluru Hotels Association, said workers from outside of the city have been given paid leave to cast their votes. All hotels and restaurants have arranged to let their staff vote and return to work.

Not wanting to be left behind, some ICSE and CBSE educational institutions in the city have offered discounts on fees if parents of children studying in their schools show the evidence that they have voted.

College students are harrying their parents to vote since it would get them extra marks. Colleges have told them that they would get four additional marks in the semester exams if both the parents show the indelible dot of ink on their fingers.

“I got a message from my son’s school about the discount offer. This is unique and very good. Parents would go to any extent to do something for their children, so why not vote and avail discount on the fees?” asked Urmila, mother of a Class III boy.