Madurai

‘Differently abled persons forced to opt for postal ballots’

Differently abled persons in various parts of the State are being forced to opt for postal ballots introduced for first time for them in the ensuing Assembly election, according to Tamil Nadu Association for the Rights of All Types of Differently Abled and Caregivers (TARATDAC).

Addressing journalists in Virudhunagar on Sunday, its State general secretary S. Namburajan said the association welcomed the new move as it would help bedridden persons and those with difficulty in mobility.

“However, in the last few days, government employees are visiting differently abled persons at their homes with consent forms opting for postal ballots and compelling them to sign them,” he alleged.

Such incidents had occurred in Tiruvannamalai, Krishnagiri, Thoothukudi and Thanjavur districts. “We have received complaints from people that if they do not give consent for postal ballots, they are being forced to give in writing that they are not willing to go for postal ballots,” Mr. Namburajan said.

Once differently abled persons signed the consent forms, they lost the right to visit the polling booth. The Election Commission, which had to provide a hindrance-free environment for the aged and the differently abled at the polling booths, wanted to ignore its responsibility and was acting against the rights of differently abled persons.

The facility of postal ballots should be an option to those who could not make it to the polling booth based on their choice. However, the way the officials were dealing with it was against the independence of 10 lakh differently abled persons in the State. The Election Commission should order to stop such anti-democratic activities of goovernment employees, he said.

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Printable version | Apr 15, 2021 12:38:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/differently-abled-persons-forced-to-opt-for-postal-ballots/article34013373.ece

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