Saturday, 20 January, 2018

Himachal Pradesh Polls: India's First Voter Shyamsaran Negi Casts Vote in Kinnaur

Untitled Himachal Pradesh Polls: India's First Voter Shyamsaran Negi Casts Vote in Kinnaur
Bennie Garza | 10 November, 2017, 11:14

The country's acclaimed first voter Shyam Saran Negi exercised his franchise at Kalpa polling station at around 11 am on Thursday with the Election Commission rolling out a red carpet for the centurion Negi, who apparently also polled in the first General Elections of independent India.

Summary: Even the booth where Negi voted on Thursday was set up in the school where he taught for 23 years. Negi (100), a retired schoolteacher, created history when he voted in Kalpa in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh to become Independent India's first voter in 1951. "Everyone must exercise their franchise and vote for a people-friendly government", Negi, who was garlanded and received by deputy commissioner Naresh Kumar Lath, said.

Negi has voted 16 times in the Lok Sabha elections and 13 times in assembly polls.

"Everyone should vote. This is the biggest right we have been given by our Constitution", he said.

Elections in snowbound areas post Independence were held on October 25, 1951 while rest of the country went into polls in 1952.

Over the years, he has never missed an opportunity to vote, Mr Negi told reporters in Kalpa, around 275 km from state capital Shimla.

He was appointed a brand ambassador of the Election Commission of India (ECI) and would be provided a auto to reach the polling booth and polling officer Arvind Sharma would receive him and escort him to the EVM, officials said. Today, the couple was among the first ones to vote, said an election official.

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