11th National Voters’ Day was celebrated across the country today on January 25, 2021, with the President Ram Nath Kovind gracing the national level event held at New Delhi in a virtual, online mode.

Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister for Law & Justice, Communications and Electronics and Information Technology graced the event as the Guest of Honour. This year, due to COVID-19, the NVD celebrations all over the country would be a combination of both physical and virtual events.

The theme for NVD 2021 is ‘Making Our Voters Empowered, Vigilant, Safe and Informed.’ This is a reiteration of the commitment of Election Commission of India (ECI) to conduct COVID-safe elections, as well as to make each voter informed, ethical and vigilant.

In his address, President Kovind said that we should always respect the valuable right to vote. The right to vote is not a simple right; people around the world have struggled a lot for this. Since independence, our Constitution has given equal voting rights to all citizens without any discrimination on the basis of merit, religion, race, caste. For this, we are indebted to the makers of our Constitution.

The President said that the chief architect of the Indian Constitution, Babasaheb Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar, considered the right to vote as paramount. Therefore, it is the responsibility of all of us, especially our youth, who get the right to vote for the first time, to exercise their franchise with the utmost sincerity and inspire others too to do so.

Praising the Election Commission of India for conducting successful and safe elections in Bihar, Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh last year during the COVID-19 pandemic, the President said that it is an extraordinary achievement of our democracy. He was happy to note that the Election Commission has taken a number of innovative and timely measures to conduct smooth, inclusive and safe elections.

Two unique digital initiatives were unveiled today. The Commission is rolling out digital voter identity cards or e-EPICs which will be downloadable on a mobile phone or in a self-printable form on the computer, after logging in from Voter Helpline Mobile App, Voter Portal www.voterportal.eci.gov.in or National Voters’ Service Portal www.nvsp.in/

The President launched ‘Radio Hello Voters’ – a 24×7 online digital radio service that will stream voter awareness programmes accessible on the Election Commission of India website. Radio Hello Voters has been envisaged to provide information on electoral processes through songs, drama, discussions, podcasts, spots, parodies etc. in Hindi, English and different regional languages from all over the country.

National Voters’ Day is celebrated all over the country on January 25 every year since 2011 to mark the Foundation day of Election Commission of India, which was established on this day in the year 1950. The main purpose of the NVD celebration is to encourage, facilitate and maximize the enrollment, especially for the new voters. Dedicated to the voters of the country, the Day is utilized to spread awareness among voters for promoting informed participation in the electoral process.