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May 1, 2024

“EC’s Focus on Vulnerable Tribal Groups in LS Polls Shows Promising Results”

The Election Commission (EC) announced on Wednesday that its dedicated efforts over the past two years to involve Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG) in the electoral process are yielding positive outcomes. The commission highlighted increased participation from these communities during the first two phases of the ongoing Lok Sabha election, citing the historic instance of the Shompen tribe from Great Nicobar exercising their voting rights for the first time in a parliamentary election.

India, with an 8.6 per cent tribal population, encompasses 75 groups falling under the PVTG category. The EC’s initiative to establish polling booths in previously inaccessible areas has significantly enhanced the participation of PVTGs, as stated in an official statement.

In the past 11 state Assembly polls, approximately nine lakh eligible voters from 14 PVTGs were identified. The commission’s special endeavors ensured a 100 per cent enrollment of PVTGs in these states, reflecting its commitment to inclusivity and democratic representation.

Under the leadership of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Rajiv Kumar, who assumed office two years ago, there has been a notable emphasis on enhancing the participation of PVTGs in the electoral process, revealed an EC official. Kumar personally instructed state chief electoral officers and district election officers to launch special campaigns and registration drives to include PVTGs in the electoral rolls, marking the first step toward their integration into the electoral system.

The EC’s sustained efforts have facilitated a significant breakthrough in ensuring the representation of marginalized tribal communities in the democratic process. The focus on PVTGs not only underscores the commission’s commitment to inclusivity but also recognizes the importance of amplifying the voices of those historically underrepresented in governance.

Moreover, the inclusion of PVTGs in the electoral process holds broader implications for the socio-political landscape of the country. It not only empowers these communities but also enriches the democratic fabric by bringing diverse perspectives and priorities to the forefront.

As India progresses through the current Lok Sabha election, the EC’s dedication to fostering the participation of vulnerable tribal groups signals a step forward in achieving a more equitable and representative democracy. With continued focus and proactive measures, the commission aims to further strengthen the engagement of PVTGs in future electoral processes, ensuring that no community is left behind in the democratic journey of the nation.

Jhumpa Lahiri

Jhumpa Lahiri

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