Bhubaneswar: Social organisation ‘Yes We Can’ organised a ‘My Vote My Right’ campaign at the Centre for Youth and Social Development (CYSD) auditorium, Bhubaneswar, Wednesday. The campaign aims at motivating people to vote and strengthen the country’s democracy.
‘Yes We Can’ had organised similar campaigns in Bolangir, Berhampur, Koraput, Rourkela, Sambalpur, Keonjhar and Cuttack to motivate people to vote in the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.
Even though India is the world’s biggest democracy and has completed over 70 years of Independence, it is still not be possible to achieve 100 per cent voting as many educated people stay away, said Sisir Sahoo of Yes We Can.
Padma Shri Prakash Rao said that many believe that their vote would not make any difference, but we must understand that voting is not just a right, but a responsibility too.
Former Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik said that in a democracy elections are the biggest opportunity to bring about changes and vote is the biggest weapon for this.
“We are lucky to have a democracy in which every adult has the right to vote. We are the biggest democracy, but our democracy is becoming weaker by the day,” he said.
“We have some MPs and MLAs who face serious criminal charges. Many of them have also been convicted by courts. But there numbers are increasing as political parties are protecting them,” Bijay added.
He said to solve this problem we must vote, and those who don’t fulfill their responsibility towards the country have no right to complain when things go awry.
“Former US President John F. Kennedy once said ‘Ask not what the country has done for you. Ask what you have done for the country.’ So if we can’t do anything for our country let’s at least vote with responsibility,” he added.
The Convener of Odisha Election Watch – Association for Democratic Reforms, Ranjan Kumar Mohanty, said elections are important and that voting by students and youth can change their views about the nation.