CEC: Participation of female voters in India exceeds men

The Election Commission of India (ECI) hosted an international webinar, in New Delhi on the theme “Enhancing electoral participation of Women, Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) & Senior citizen Voters: Sharing Best Practices and New Initiatives”.

Highlights

  • In the webinar, the chief election commissioner of India, Sushil Chandra, noted that women’s participation in exercising franchise has overpassed that of men, after 7 decades and 17 general elections.
  • Women’s participation stood at more than 67 per cent in 2019 General Election.
  • The gender gap was -16.71 per cent in 1962, has reversed to +0.17 per cent in 2019.
  • India has observed a 235.72 per cent increase in female electors since the 1971 elections.

Initiatives taken by ECI to increase women participation

The ECI has taken several initiatives to enhance women participation in election:

  1. Associated more women as polling booth officials,
  2. Large number of All Women Managed Polling Stations
  3. Creche facility at Polling Stations
  4. Separate toilets and waiting area at the polling booths
  5. Ease of registration with women Block level Officers etc.

Absentee Voter Facilitation

The ECI introduced the Absentee Voter Facilitation in 2020 to ensure voting facility at the doorstep. It was introduced for 80-plus senior citizens, PwDs and COVID-affected voters. Such postal ballot facility was successfully implemented in six state assembly elections including Assam, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Kerala and the Union Territory of Puducherry.

Which countries attended the webinar?

Delegates from 24 countries namely Bhutan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Fiji, Republic of Korea, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritius, Russia, Philippines, Romania, Sao Tome and Principe, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Taiwan, Suriname, Yemen, Uzbekistan, and Zambia took part in the webinar.

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