Commonwealth countries discuss compulsory voting
New Delhi: The Commonwealth Network of National Election Management Bodies (CNNEMB), a network of electoral commissions of the 54 commonwealth nations, which met here on Thursday, discussed ways to increase voters` participation.
Chief Election Commissioner of India, Dr SY Quraishi here, inaugurated the meeting of the working group of CNNEMB, on voter education and electoral participation today.
Election Commissioners VS Sampath and HS Brahma also attended the meeting. Besides senior officials from the Election Commission, the working group included representatives from South Africa, Kenya and the Commonwealth Secretariat.
Opening the meet, Dr SY Quraishi called upon member countries to work jointly for strengthening election system and processes. He said that voter education should be the response to the debate on compulsory voting.
Sampath and Brahma highlighted the increased participation in the recent elections in India, following the policies and programmes adopted by the Commission.
Commonwealth officials presented the Observer Groups findings on voters` participation. The ECI team presented the Indian experience and good practices, which were appreciated by the participants.
The Election Commissioner from Kenya gave an overview of the country experience in the evolution of voters` education and participation.
The issue of compulsory voting was discussed at length. The action points emerging from the consultations would be shared among Commonwealth countries.
The working group will continue its meeting tomorrow to finalise a set of formal recommendations.
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