"The only way to change is to vote"- Paul Wellstone

“The only way to change is to vote”- Paul Wellstone

by HelpAge India April 9, 2019 0 comments Cause of Serving

“The vote is a trust more delicate than any other, for it involves not just the interests of the voter, but his life, honor and future as well” – Jose Marti

To be able to Vote is one of the basic fundamental right of any citizen in the country and therefore more than a right, it should be taken as a responsibility and that too a major one to use their right to vote; to choose the leader who can fully commit and dedicate his life for the country; a leader who is not only capable to lead the country but also its people towards a brighter future. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that each of us realize the importance of voting and exercising one’s right.  India is home to many senior citizens who exercise their right to vote and consider it their duty to choose a leader who is worthy, because it is not just their life that depends on it but their family and the entire country.

Over the years, our seniors have witnessed not only a change in the election procedures but also the change in the candidates that run the election on behalf of the political parties. Earlier the task of enlisting the manifesto was allotted to the trusted party leaders but now the manifesto is one of the most critical and important part of the political strategy for campaigns.

The Congress and BJP have adopted new and wide-ranging systems to crowd source their manifestos. Whether the parties are holding conferences with directed vote-bank or a novel contrivance to find web centered response, manifesto conscripting team is one of the most vital module of the political campaigns.

Political parties are including people and their demands in conscripting their manifestos for the coming general elections. Many civil society groups and political parties have led massive campaigns for their issues to be included in the manifesto.  HelpAge India along with Pension Parishad had raised awareness regarding the right to pension for senior citizens. About 5000 senior citizens and youth participated in the Pension Awareness Rally in Delhi on 1st October, 2018.  Political parties are not only interested but are also engaging actively in such groups.

The Election Commission of India is undertaking various activities to spread awareness on the importance of voting and organizing various programs and events across the country to educate more people and encouraging them to vote. The Election Commission came out with Voter Verification and Information Program (VVIP) for people for authentications of their names, corrections in the voter details, new registrations and rectifications in the Voter Id Cards for the upcoming Elections.

People are aware of the current state of affairs and what the country needs right now is for everyone to exercise their right to vote. Amidst the political tension, religious intolerance is rising to an all high and while political parties are offering freebies to the people to get their support, the need of the hour is to concentrate on issues like, education, employability, eradicating poverty and social security for the seniors.

Since India has a population of about 100 million senior citizens, and the figures are expected to increase, it is important to take their needs into consideration. Since elders in the family have a lot of influence on the younger generation and they also consider voting an important duty and just a privilege, they would definitely want more security and benefits for the senior citizens by the government. Older people are quite susceptible to change in policy made by elected Government.  When the health and livelihood of an elder depends heavily on the Governments assistance, then voting becomes more important than just a civic duty as it can make noticeable difference in the quality of life of a person.

It is therefore, imperative for the Government to create awareness on the importance of voting so that the citizens of this country are aware of their responsibilities and realize the significant difference each vote can make. Most often we blame the Government and the leaders for not coming up to our expectations or fulfilling their promises, but this will not solve any of our problems; but choosing a good leader and making sure that the Government takes the demands of its people seriously.

Not voting is not a solution, because each vote counts and therefore it is your fundamental duty to vote. By not voting and exercising your right, you are giving up on your right and therefore you lose your voice to either complain or object. It is time that we stop believing in false promises or entertain impossible expectations and ideas and rather than focusing on “if” and “but” we actually focus on the realistic solutions and measures by the elected Government.

“You’ve got to vote, vote, vote, vote. That’s it; that’s the way we move forward. That’s how we make progress for ourselves and for our country” – Michelle Obama

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