EC portal to aid disabled voters

The Election Commission will launch a voter education and electoral participation portal on July 3, with a section dedicated to the Persons with Disabilities (PwDs), in the backdrop of a two-day national consultation programme on issues pertaining to their inclusion in the poll process.

The programme on “Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) in the Electoral Process” is being organised with a view to come up with a national policy on the issue. According to the 2011 census, India has around 70 million people with disabilities.

Post-consultation, a comprehensive report on challenges along with short/medium/ long-term action points will be prepared. Among the participants will be senior government functionaries, representatives from political parties and NGOs, and experts.

Under the EC’s Strategic Plan 2016-2025, greater participation of PwDs in the electoral process has been identified as one of the core objectives.

As part of the initiative, the EC had this year declared “Accessible Elections” as the theme for the National Voters Day observed on January 25. The international conference held on January 24 focussed on the same theme.

The Commission had earlier conducted consultations at the district level across the country to identify the barriers, challenges and possible solutions. The outcomes, particularly on issues of registration and polling, were documented and taken up at the State-level consultations.

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