Polling booths to be disabled friendly

The May 12 elections to the State Assembly is expected to be “disabled friendly”. For, unlike the past elections where the booths used to have a namesake ramps besides no other facilities for persons with disabilities, the authorities have promised to address the problems faced by such persons in accessing polling booths and exercising their franchise.

A special list of voters with disabilities has also been planned.

For example, in Mysuru district, the district election authorities have promised to establish all basic facilities at polling booths for persons with disabilities.

“Wheelchairs, scribes for persons with visual disability to help them cast their votes, ramps and other facilities have been planned. A committee headed by the ZP CEO has been constituted to look into the needs of the disabled at the booths and provide them accordingly,” said Deputy Commissioner K.B. Shivakumar, who is the District Election Officer of Mysuru.

With booths mostly set up on school premises, steps have been taken to ensure all basic facilities for the voters and the polling staff, which include potable water, furniture, and electricity.

In addition, a voter assistance cell will come up in each booth to facilitate voters to locate their booths, numbers in the rolls and cast their vote without any difficulty.

Mr. Shivakumar said steps would be taken to set up an all-woman booth in each constituency (Mysuru district has 11 constituencies) and voters’ photo slips will be distributed to the voters one or two days before the polling day.

Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballots System (ETPBS), which was tried recently on an experimental basis in some States, will be introduced for the first time for service voters in the elections. This online service voter registration system has been planned to streamline the registration of service voters.

The Deputy Commissioner’s office will have a cell that monitors all election-related complaints registered with the authorities.

There will be a phone line to register complaints besides a system for online registration of complaints, if any, according to Mr. Shivakumar.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 12:11:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/polling-booths-to-be-disabled-friendly/article23367996.ece

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