Jowai, April 09 : Pura Kynjing, the Doloi of Jowai on Tuesday joined hands with CEO Meghalaya in educating people of Jowai about the importance of voting, and urged the tribal populace to vote in large numbers on April 19.

As voting for the Lok Sabha election is scheduled to be held on April 19 in Meghalaya, the office of the Chief Electoral Officer Meghalaya on Tuesday had organized an awareness programme at Iawmusiang in Jowai, the headquarters of the West Jaintia Hills district.

The Doloi of Jowai urged the people of the town to actively engage in the democratic process, thereby strengthening the foundations of their society and ensuring a brighter and stronger democracy.

Hundreds of people from different parts of West Jaintia Hills district carefully listened to the Doloi about the importance of voting.

The Doloi said that voting is the cornerstone of democracy. It is the fundamental right through which citizens express their will and choose their representatives, he said.

The Doloi, who is the most revered traditional head of the Jaintia community, also said that that voting is not just a right but also a responsibility of the citizens.

B.S. Sohliya, the Deputy Commissioner of West Jaintia Hills district also attended the voters’ awareness programme, and said CEO Meghalaya has been shouldering the SVEEP initiative of the Election Commission of India through civic engagement, especially with the traditional institutions.

Sohliya said by casting the votes, citizens choose their best leaders, and in turn, makes India a stronger democracy. 

The Deupty Commissioner said voting it important for everyone because it is a way for citizens to shape the future direction of their communities, ensuring progress and prosperity for generations to come.

In addition to the Doloi and the Deputy Commissioner of West Jaintia Hills district, the programme at Jowai was attended by Arwatki Sumer, the Secretary of Sein raid of Jowai, D V Lyngdoh, Additional Deputy Commissioner. 

U Sangot, the traditional Khasi information broadcaster, adopted as a part of the Chief Electoral Officer Meghalaya’s voter awareness programme, also took active part in educating the electorates of Jowai on the importance of voting.

U Sangot said it is a matter of pride that the electorate in Meghalaya will be the first in India to exercise their franchise as the voting is scheduled to be held on April 19, the first phase of Lok Sabha Election 2024.

Highlighting CEO Meghalaya’s Clean & Green elections, the U Sangot said every voter should compete with each other to be the first one to exercise their franchise in their respective polling stations.

The first two voters – one male and one female, will get the opportunity to plant saplings in the campus of the polling stations, with their names written on a board by the side of the tree.

“Clean and green election is the primary focus of the General Election to Lok Sabha 2024 in Meghalaya,” the U Sangot said, adding that a clean and green ecosystem can only lead Meghalaya towards the path of prosperity.

U Sangot also told the electorates that voters should ensure that they reach the polling stations on time.

The U Sangot initiative by CEO Meghalaya is part of Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP), the flagship programme of the Election Commission of India for voter education, spreading voter awareness and promoting voter literacy in India.