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Odisha: Visually-Impaired Officer Trains Persons With Disabilities On How To Vote In Upcoming Polls


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09 April 2019

Bikash Sharma


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Cuttack: Election Commission of India (ECI) has declared the 2019 elections as ‘Accessible Elections’ and to achieve this, persons with disabilities are being trained in all districts of Odisha to cast their votes. Today in Cuttack, the Social Security & Empowerment of Persons With Disabilities Department held an awareness program and Odisha’s 1st Visually-Impaired OAS Officer Sanyasi Kumar Behera took charge of the training.

Speaking from experience, he taught several young visually-impaired voters on how to exercise their franchisee. Taking the stage during a mock drill in Ravenshaw College, he demonstrated the usage of dummy Braille ballot papers and its correct usage.

Behera, who is currently posted as a Social Security Officer, explained, “The dummy ballot paper in Braille script has serial numbers corresponding to candidate name, photo and symbol. The candidates will first read the paper and press the button according to the signage. This will help in fighting the fear psychosis in minds of PwD voters.”

A first-time voter. who suffers eyesight loss, Jhumuri Biswal was ecstatic after receiving the training. She said, “Today, I learned how to vote and how to select candidate. Sanyasi sir held our hands and taught us step-by-step. The process feels safe and secured. I was nervous earlier, but now I am confident that I will not cast a wrong vote.”

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Sanyasi Kumar Behera, Social Security Officer, SSEPD Dept

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Jhumuri Biswal, Visually-Impaired Voter