Banks And Post offices will now help ECI step-up voter education and outreach ahead of 2024 Lok Sabha Elections

Pune, 26th February 2024: In a groundbreaking initiative, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has joined forces with the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) and the Department of Posts (DoP) to ramp up voter education ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha Elections. This strategic collaboration aims to leverage the extensive networks of banks and post offices for an effective voter outreach.

The MoU, signed in the presence of Chief Election Commissioner Shri Rajiv Kumar and Election Commissioner Shri Arun Goel, marks a pivotal moment in ECI’s ongoing efforts to enhance electoral awareness. Notably, ECI recently inked a similar agreement with the Ministry of Education to integrate electoral literacy into the educational curriculum.

Key Highlights of the Partnership:

Online Visibility: IBA and DoP, along with their members and affiliated institutions, will prominently display voter education messages on their websites, guiding visitors to delve deeper into the electoral process.

Multi-channel Dissemination: Voter education content will be disseminated through various promotional channels, including social media and customer outreach platforms, ensuring broad awareness among stakeholders and the public.

Physical Presence: The initiative includes displaying voter education messages through posters, flex, and hoardings at major office locations, reaching customers at crucial touchpoints.

Employee Engagement: All member institutions under IBA and DoP will establish Voter Awareness Fora to engage employees and customers in discussions and initiatives related to voter education. Additionally, there will be a focus on integrating the training module on SVEEP (Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation) into the regular orientation programs of employees.

Postal Impact: The Department of Posts will play a unique role by affixing a special cancellation stamp bearing voter education messages on postal articles.

This collaboration comes in response to the concern that approximately 30 crore electors did not cast their votes in the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections. With a commitment to improving voter turnout, this partnership aims to empower citizens with knowledge about their electoral rights and responsibilities.

Background on Partners:

IBA: Established in 1946, the Indian Banks’ Association boasts a network of 247 members across the country, including public and private sector banks, regional rural banks, small finance and payment banks, foreign banks, and local area banks.

DoP: With a history spanning over 150 years, the Department of Posts has been a crucial element in the country’s communication and socio-economic development. Operating through more than 1,55,000 post offices, it holds the most widely distributed postal network globally.

This collaborative effort between ECI, IBA, and DoP signifies a significant stride towards strengthening democracy by fostering informed and active participation in the electoral process. Through concerted efforts, these organizations aim to create a culture of electoral awareness, addressing the challenge posed by the 2019 Lok Sabha Election’s 67.4% voting percentage.