Special arrangements would be made for Delhi voters who are aged 100 and above on the polling day, including pick-up and drop facility, and they will be greeted at booths with bouquets and selfies to make them “feel like VVIPs”.
Delhi goes to polls on May 12 and Chief Electoral Officer Ranbir Singh said, there are 96 centenarian voters in the city, and women outnumber men in this category.
“We have been trying for the last four months to identify all voters who are aged 100 or above. This is a first such initiative to cater to such elderly voters who were born before Independence and have seen the first general elections in 1952. For us, they are VVIP voters and they will be treated as one,” Singh told PTI.
According to data shared by the Delhi CEO Office, there are 42 male and 54 female centenarian voters.
“A senior officer will go to the house of each of these centenarian voters, residing nearest to the polling station in a constituency, and escort them to booths. They will also motivate them to vote unless they are bedridden and their health doesn’t permit,” the CEO said.
“But, if such voters are still eager to vote despite their frailty, we will make all possible arrangements, to ensure they exercise their franchise. They will also be given priority in voting, so they don’t have to stand in line,” he said.
At polling stations they will be greeted with bouquets and polling staff would take selfies with them, Singh said.
Among the centenarian voters on the electoral roll are 111-year-old Bachchan Singh, a resident of West Delhi’s Tilak Nagar and 110-year-old Ram Pyari Shankwar, who is suffering from age-related ailments for the last one decade and lives in East Delhi’s Kondli.
“He has never missed out on voting as far as I can remember as he understands the value of even one ballot. He barely remembers things now since he suffered a stroke couple of months ago, though, he is able to walk and speak. So we will take him to the polling booth,” Bachchan Singh’s grandson, Gurucharan Singh, said.
The Delhi CEO said, in keeping with the theme of ‘Accessible Elections’, proper facilities would be provided to voters with disabilities.
“For visually-challenged voters, a dummy sheet would be kept at the polling station, on which they can feel and get to know about the candidates, and the serial number before exercising their franchise,” Singh said.
A facility for having a companion is also there, besides, wheelchair and ramp facilities would be provided for such voters.
As many as 164 candidates are in the fray in Delhi, where the polls are largely being seen as a triangular contest among the AAP, BJP and the Congress.
Of the over 1.43 crore voters in Delhi, 78,73,022 are male and 64,42,762 female, while 669 belong to the third gender. The number of overseas electors stands at 40 while count of service voters is 11,005.