New Delhi: The Chief Election Commissioner of India Shri Om Prakash Rawat today interacted with 250 students from ten ASAEN Countries. The Students from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, are visiting India as part of the Indo-ASEAN students exchange programme under the aegis of Ministry of External Affairs.
Terming the youth as the beacon of hope for future of democracy, Shri Rawat said Election Commission of India attaches great importance to involvement of young people in all the democratic processes. The Chief Election Commissioner in his address stressed that Emerging challenges to electoral integrity such as fake news, paid news, data harvesting to do profiling and unleashing of targetted messages to sway voting patterns, social media vulnerabilities (emergence of bots) etc. make it imperative to look up to young to devise strategies to meet these challenges for preserving hard earned democracy.
Shri OP Rawat pointed out that 70 percent of the global population are living in democratic nations now, as opposed to a mere one percent some 200 years back. He said that it is important for all stakeholders of democratic governance to try to broaden the avenues for the young people to effectively participate in the full spectrum of democratic activities, starting with elections and delivery through good governance.
Shri OP Rawat also informed that Electoral Literacy Clubs are being formed in schools and colleges to motivate youngsters to participate fully in electoral processes. He said that the Election Commission has set up the India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM) to provide a platform for ‘capacity building’ of election managers from all across the democratic world as well as for sharing the best practices.
“We all can jointly take pride in the phenomenal progress made in furthering mutual cooperation by India and ASEAN in the last 25 years. This association has given birth to a new template of regional cooperation and integration for the world — Shared Values, Common Destiny’” Shri Rawat added.
The Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Shri Umesh Sinha also addressed the gathering detailing the varied dimensions and complexities involved in the Election processes.