Lakhs of eligible voters were disenfranchised in the last Lok Sabha elections when they found their names missing from the voters list. Their anger, and sheer helplessness not only gave birth to a social media campaign but also forced a red faced Election Commission to apologise and assure the Bombay High Court of adequate measures in future.
But with the Maharashtra Assembly elections round the corner, the fear of a repeat of the Lok Sabha elections has taken centrestage.
From moving the court to approaching people, several campaigns have been started in Mumbai and Pune to raise awareness among voters. Several youngsters have taken up the task to make personal calls to increase understanding.
Meanwhile, the EC has taken several steps to avoid a repeat of the General Elections disaster.
It has made the entire list of eligible voters online which would help voters to check their names. It carried out a roll revision drive between June and September.
The EC also started to send out letters to registered addresses asking them to check their names in the voters list.
While in Pune, around 5 lakh new voters were added to the list, 25 lakh voters were enrolled in Mumbai, as part of the drive.
Despite the new initiatives, however, the Election Commission officials say that without citizen participation, it would be next to impossible to avoid the Lok Sabha fiasco. They urge that citizens should take out time to check whether their names figure in the list or not.