New Delhi: India and Bhutan have extended
their cooperation on electoral cooperation and a Memorandum of
Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the Chief Election
Commissioners of both the countries.
As per the MoU, signed between India`s Chief Election
Commissioner S Y Quraishi and Chief Election Commissioner of
Bhutan Dasho Kunzang Wangdi, the two countries have agreed to
exchange knowledge and experience, information, material,
expertise and technical knowhow, training of personnel and
development of human resources in electoral matters for a
period of five years.
The two have also decided to take up joint initiatives and
provide assistance to others.
Quraishi had visited Bhutan from September 16 to 18 on an
invitation of Dasho Kunzang Wangdi for strengthening
cooperation between the two Election Commissions. He was
accompanied by EC Director General Akshay Rout.
Quraishi also offered to create a SAARC Resource Centre at
the India International Institute of Democracy and Election
Management (IIDEM) for preserving and nurturing
election-related documentation in relation to SAARC countries.
Bhutan`s CEC welcomed the idea and presented the first set
of documents for this Resource Centre. He also requested for
training of their newly-inducted officers through IIDEM
platform in India, to which Quraishi agreed and offered to
train Bhutanese election officials during the process of
forthcoming state elections.
Impressed by the initiative of Election Commission of
Bhutan in engaging school children for educating and
persuading their parents to take part in the electoral
process, Quraishi said he would seek to adopt the model in
Election Commission of Bhutan also organised field visits
for the Indian delegation to give them a first-hand
appreciation of district-level election functionaries.
Quraishi also paid a courtesy call on the officiating
Prime Minister of Bhutan, Lyonpo Yeshy Zimba, during which
both sides exchanged views on strengthening electoral,
democratic and governance processes between India and Bhutan.