While youths vote for change, the elderly not far behind

First-time voters with their appreciation letters, at polling booths in Mohali Wednesday. First-time voters with their appreciation letters, at polling booths in Mohali Wednesday.

The first time Vishal (28), a resident of Phase 11, stepped into a polling station, was not as a voter but as a presiding officer in a village in Uttar Pradesh. After two stints as a presiding officer, he decided to finally become a voter on Wednesday.

“I especially returned home from Noida to vote as I’ve realised it is my duty to vote. After overseeing the voting process at a polling station twice during the UP Assembly elections, I decided it is important for me to become a voter myself,” he said.

Like Vishal, other youngsters, too, came out in large numbers to vote for “change”. “All I want is a change in the entire governance. I’m sick of the same old babus ruining our country. Only voting empowers me to have my say in the selection of the right candidate for the PM’s post,” said Rajat, a resident of Phase 10.

Another first-time voter, Govinda Sharma, felt that inflation and corruption in India have touched an all-time low. “I had always wanted to come out and vote to help rooting out corruption. Although casting my vote was a short exercise, it was quite satisfying,” he said.

If the young voters made it a point to vote, the elderly were not far behind, who braved the scorching heat to exercise their franchise. “Why should I not vote? I have voted all my life and nothing will deter me come what may. I’ve seen different governments come and go but have never missed my chance to vote,” said wheelchair-bound Harnam Kaur, 95.

75-year-old Balbir Kaur, who came out alone to vote, said, “My family members went to another polling station to vote and my husband passed away recently. But I don’t miss out voting as it is the fundamental duty of every citizen. Although multiple governments have failed to address the needs of the nation, one should not be pessimistic as there are great success stories attached with our nation too, and they have happened due to a collective effort of all Indians.”