National Voters' Day or Rashtriya Matdata Diwas is celebrated on January 25 every year. The Election Commission came into being on January 25, 1950, a day before India became a republic. The National Voters' Day encourages young voters to take part in the political process. It is a day to celebrate the right to vote and vibrant democracy of India. The day was first celebrated in 2011 to mark Election Commission's Foundation Day. This will be eighth National Voters' Day and will be used to spread awareness among voters regarding effective participation in the electoral process.
On National Voters' Day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the country expresses gratitude to the Election Commission for its efforts to make the electoral process vibrant and participative.
"We express gratitude to ECI for their many efforts towards making our electoral process more vibrant and participative," the prime minister wrote on Twitter.
Greetings on National Voters Day.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 25, 2020
We express gratitude to ECI for their many efforts towards making our electoral process more vibrant and participative.
May this day inspire us to work towards increased voter awareness and turnout, which makes our democracy stronger
He hoped the day inspires people to work towards increased voter awareness and turnout, which makes the democracy stronger.
President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday lamented that there are some voters who do not understand the importance of their right to exercise franchise and reminded them that in several countries people had to struggle to get it.
Addressing an event here on National Voters' Day marking the establishment of the Election Commission in 1950, the President said from the very first general election to the 17th Lok Sabha polls held last year, voters have increased the credibility of Indian democracy all over the world.
"For this, I congratulate all the voters of the country. But even today some of our voters do not understand the importance of their franchise. They should know that in most of the democratic countries of the world, the common people had to agitate to get the franchise and many sacrifices had to be made," President Kovind said.
He pointed out that even in old democracies such as England, women were able to get equal voting rights in the 20th century, after nearly three decades of struggle.
The framers of the Indian Constitution gave this invaluable right to all adult Indians without any discrimination, the President said.
President Kovind reminded the audience that soon after Independence, India granted adult suffrage to all citizens which came under a lot of criticism as at that time, democracy was limited to a few developed and prosperous nations.
Watch LIVE as President Kovind addresses the 10th National Voters' Day celebrations in New Delhi https://t.co/Yk3qTKAxWT— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) January 25, 2020
There were reservations that with only 16 per cent literacy, and poverty, universal adult franchise would not be successful. He said the decision was dubbed as "biggest gamble in history".
"But our voters proved it to be the biggest successful experiment in democracy in the world history. They lived up to the conviction expressed by the Constitution makers on the common man," the President noted.
(With Inputs From PTI)