Prisoner appeals people to exercise franchise
Manoj Patel, an ex-serviceman serving a life term in Vadodara Central Jail for the past 15 years, has appealed to citizens of Gujarat to exercise their franchise in the upcoming Assembly elections.
Significantly, when the well educated voters in society chose to refrain from casting their votes, an appeal from a prisoner who has been sentenced to life imprisonment, proved quite an eye opener for society.
Though Manoj, who has been in prison for the past 15 years, continued his studies in jail and obtained various certificates, he keeps himself update with the current political events. He says, "Everybody from each community must cast their vote because it is a duty of every citizen to select a right representative for the development of their state or the country." Worried with the lower turn out in general elections, the Election Commission, with a view to encouraging people for exercise their franchise on large scale, has initiated a massive voter awareness campaign by introducing Systematic Voter's Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) in the forthcoming polls.
All the District Election Officers in Gujarat have introduced new and innovative ideas for the implementation of SVEEP in their respective districts. The EC has even planned to utilise the services of Olympians like Saina Nehwal and Mary Com for voter awareness programmes.