Enthusiasm ran high amongst staff and the electorate at the pink booths set up at the 142 polling stations across the state. The Election Commission of India had set up the booths to encourage women voters and also to develop a sense of independence and confidence in women. As many as 568 women staff members managed the pink booths.
The polling, which started on a low note picked up gradually in the Shimla urban constituency which registered 63.9% polling in the 2017 assembly elections. A pink booth set up in the Keleston locality drew the attraction of the electorate. The polling booth which was fully managed by the women staff recorded more than 64% polling. Women employees and women from voluntary organisations warmly welcomed the voters coming here. Those who came to vote here for the first time were also welcomed with garlands and were inspired to strengthen democracy. Two pink polling booths were set up in each of the 68 assembly constituencies of the state. The responsibility of security at these booths was also given to women police personnel. Right from getting voters inside the booth to maintaining law and order here, all the responsibility was on the women’s staff.
Taking special initiative for the convenience of young children and their mothers on the day of polling, the district election officer office Kinnaur had set an example by setting up Childcare centres at various 87 polling stations this time.
District election officer Abid Hussain Sadiq along with the superintendent of police Vivek Chahal inspected the Adarsh polling station in Kalpa and motivated the voters to cast their vote. Apart from this, he also inspected the child care centre set up by the women and child development department at this polling station in Kalpa.
“It was a different experience for the women who came to vote on Saturday with their small children. The women were relieved to find getting milk, water, toys and other facilities for the children in the childcare centres set up separately at the polling stations,” an official said. Many were able to spend quality time with their children as they waited to cast their votes.