District officials are doing their bit to convince a major section of the city’s population, which is in the age group of 20 to 39 years, to vote in large numbers. The age group accounts for around 13.45 lakh voters amid a total of 25.92 lakh eligible voters for the upcoming UP assembly polls in the six assembly segments of Ghaziabad.
Such voters comprise parents, working professionals and youngsters who will make a major difference to the fate of any candidate in the elections on February 11. The other major share of voters in the district is the around 5.55 lakh voters in age group of 40-49 years.
“We have started major campaigns to target the majority age group and get all the voters to cast their votes. Schools have been directed to write reminders in the diaries of students, asking their parents to go to cast their vote. A major gathering and an event by nearly 10,000-15,000 students is also planned on January 25,” said Nidhi Kesarwani , district election officer and district magistrate, Ghaziabad.
“We are taking all measures to achieve the target of 75% polling this time. A major relief is that the polling day falls on Saturday, which is generally off for working people,” she added.
The age group of 20-29 and 30-39 years also accounts for 14.97% and 18%, respectively, of district’s projected population of 4,081,159 up to year 2017. This time, a hectic publicity campaign is also undertaken by residents’ bodies in highrises to urge people to vote.
“We have conducted rallies by school students to encourage voters in trans-Hindon areas. We are putting up banners, posters and hoardings in 40-45 highrises and are also trying to put up four to five 12-feet balloons over highrises. A candlelight march is also to be conducted in Indirapuram on the evening of January 21 and a human chain is proposed on January 28,” said Sharat Jha, from the Consortium of Societies, Ghaziabad.
The district also has 25,605 new voters, in the age group of 18-19 years, who will exercise their franchise for the first time this election.
“We are focusing on good candidates without a criminal record and especially those who are educated and have worked at the ground level for development in our area. I am excited to participate in the election process for the first time,” said Parth Sangwan, a B.Tech student from Shakti Khand in Indirapuram.
The district also has a population of around 2.5 lakh senior citizens. They account for nearly 4.01%, 1.61% and 0.51%, respectively, of the projected 2017 population in the age group of 60-69, 70-79 and over 80 years.
“Kaushambi has a major population of senior citizens and working class people. It is seen that they generally don’t go out to vote during local bodies’ and assembly elections. This time, we have decided to launch a massive campaign starting a week before the polling day,” said VK Mittal, president, Kaushambi Apartment Residents’ Welfare Association.
“This will include door to door awareness campaigns by respective RWAs, putting up of banners and sending e-mails to residents. Since the polling is on Saturday this time, we can urge more voters to come out and vote,” he added.