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Lok Sabha elections 2019: In a first, students to help guide voters

The poll panel in Delhi has already sent a request to the directorate of education to send names of two students of class 12 (session 2019 – 20) from each government-run school.

delhi Updated: Mar 18, 2019 08:53 IST
Joydeep Thakur
Joydeep Thakur
New Delhi
lok sabha elections 2019,lok sabha elections,lok sabha
In a first, school students in the city would be deployed as volunteers at polling stations to guide voters during the Lok Sabha elections on May 12. Photo by Karun Sharma/Hindustan Time(HT Photo)

In a first, school students in the city would be deployed as volunteers at polling stations to guide voters during the Lok Sabha elections on May 12.

The poll panel in Delhi has already sent a request to the directorate of education to send names of two students of class 12 (session 2019 – 20) from each government-run school. These students would be deployed on the polling day along with college and university students, and National Cadet Corps (NCC) cadets.

“Earlier, only college and university students along with NCC recruits were deployed as volunteers. For the first time ever, school students would be deployed as volunteers this year. Who would know the school premises the best – the location of rooms, drinking water, toilets — other than a student of that school? Hence, the plan to utilise this huge resource,” said a senior official with the Chief Electoral Officer’s office in Delhi.

Spread over 2,696 locations, Delhi have 13,816 polling stations, of which most are in schools, colleges and other educational institutions.

While at least 6,000 cadets from NCC’s junior wing would be deployed at the polling stations, the administration of Delhi University and Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University have been directed to send a list of at least 1,200 students each. At least 50% of the volunteers should be female, the officer said.

The directorate of education and department of social welfare have also been asked to procure wheelchairs for use in the institutions as well as the elections.

“We will receive around 3,000 wheelchairs from Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO) free-of-cost. But this is a one-time affair and we would start paying for the wheelchairs from next elections,” the senior poll panel official said.

Students and NCC cadets who are going to be deployed as volunteers would be also sensitised on how to handle wheelchairs and facilitate persons with disabilities in casting their votes.

First Published: Mar 18, 2019 06:06 IST