Voting for Change

In: Other Topics

Submitted By ShanthiStephen
Words 432
Pages 2
“Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only little”
– Edmond Burke
On 10th May 2008, the first phase of elections in the state of Karnataka will begin. Citizens ages 18 and older will have the opportunity to make a decision which may impact their own lives and the lives of generations to come. Equipped with the right to vote, they will determine who will lead the state of Karnataka.
Unfortunately there are many reasons why citizens decide not to take part in this decision-making process.
Such reasons range from discontent with the candidates and disillusionment with the system to simple apathy.
Other challenges to higher participation stems from the painfully long electoral roll registration process and the inconvenience of voting itself. These issues often lead citizens to grow discouraged by the political process and to decide not to participate.
Before becoming completely disillusioned by the political process, it is important to discern whether or not we are capitalizing on the information that is currently available to improve the system which governs our quality of life. The truth is that we already have at least some of the tools necessary to vote for change, it is just a matter of understanding and utilizing them.
Let us take just two obstacles many citizens frequently complain about that can be addressed by an existing measure –discontent with candidate selection and impersonation of voters at the polling booth. According to Section 49-O of the Conduct of Elections published in
1961 there is a provision specifically designed for those voters who are unhappy with all of the candidates that are standing for office. A registered voter simply has to go to his local polling booth, provide the presiding electoral officer with his thumbprint and inform him that he votes for “no one.” In doing so…...

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