Tamil Nadu polls: Kids ask parents to not sell their votes

Parents told DC that their perspective has changed, thanks to the students' efforts.

Chennai: Millions of rupees are being spent and many talented brains are put to use to spread awareness to cast votes in the May 16 polls, while a motley group of children in a remote Tamil Nadu town has turned to the poor man’s postcard to plead with their parents to vote.

Students of Chairman Manicka Vasagam Middle school at Devakottai in Sivagangai district have written touching appeals to the ‘elders,’ pleading with them to vote on poll day and not sell their votes. A class five student, C. Gayathri told DC that she has sent postcards to her relatives and parents. “I have also written to my friend’s parents who appreciated my work,” she said.

Gayathri’s mother C. Swarnaambal said that her daughter has taught her the importance of her vote. “I regretted accepting freebies earlier and have decided to not participate in the campaigns this year,” said the proud mother whose husband is a daily wage labourer.

Gayathri is resolute against cash for votes and shoos away political party members who come to their doorstep, it is learnt. Headmaster of the school, L. Chokkalingam initiated the awareness drive which changed the mindsets of over 400 people in the small town. “We have also listed low voter turnout localities and conducted dramas and rangoli competitions to sensitise them,” said Chokkalingam. “It will also help children who are the future voters to travel on the lines of democracy,” the headmaster opined.

Parents told DC that their perspective has changed, thanks to the students’ efforts. “I cannot skip work as I will lose wages. But my son had educated me about the extension of poll timings this year,” M. Sathya, parent of eight class student Dinesh.

Another parent M Maheswari said that she withdrew her plans of going out of the town after her 4th class son Kishore Kumar sent her a postcard, reminding her of her right to vote. While the urban child is busy browsing new games on the
internet,children in a remote town have successfully spread the message wide.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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