Lok Sabha elections: In Assam, an initiative to bridge digital divide, make poll process inclusive

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The i-help initiative to promote digital electoral literacy in Assam has been launched in view of the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls, officials said. The i-help is a joint initiative of the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer(CEO) and Common Service Centres (CSC) in Assam. CEO Mukesh Chandra Sahu launched the i-help initiative on Sunday. Today, we are experiencing a transition period to the digital world. To make the transition smoother for the general public, CSC can play a vital role to educate the people on the usage of IT-enabled services related to election, Sahu said in a statement. This particular initiatve will fill the digital divide and fulfill the objective of turning the General Election more inclusive and participatory, he added. The CSCs are internet-enabled access points spread throughout the country delivering various government and non- government digital services to the citizens and is uniquely positioned in rural areas to significantly extend the awareness and outreach activities of CEO, Assam. READ ALSO | The CSC has presence in all the 2,528 gram panchayats in the state and there are 4,587 functional centres at present. The presence of the CSCs at the grassroot level can be utilised to educate the voters on ECIs IT-enabled services like c-Vigil and voter helpline number. It will be a win-win situation if the objective of voter awareness is fulfilled and it will also help the CSCs to build lasting relationship with the people, Sahu said. As per the last summary revision published on January 1 this year, over 2.17 crore voters, including at least 7.06 lakh first timers, will exercise their franchise in a three- phase elections to elect 14 parliamentarians from Assam. The voting in Assam will take place at 28,143 polling stations in three phases on April 11, 18 and 23.

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