Development is all that matters to first-time voters


When 18-year-old Amrut Vasava stepped out to cast his ballot for the first time, better roads and uninterrupted electricity supply in his Rojghat village were at top of his wishlist.

The hopes and aspirations of first-time electorates like Vasava are similar, with a belief that electoral procedure is the only means to "set things right" in their respective villages and cities.

"In the past few years, a lot has changed in our village. We have electricity and televisions; if that can be called development. But power supply is erratic, roads are in poor condition and I believe this should change and only voting can help me get the leader I believe in elected," said Vasava who voted in tribal-dominated Narmada district.

Keshu Jadeja (19) and Heena Kadaccha, first-time voters from Porbandar district, are voting to bring about a change in their respective villages.

"I think, election is the only way to bring solution to your problems. We have huge problem of water and I've been witnessing it for long. I've voted today so that the person whom I trust goes to assembly to address our issues," said Keshu.

Similar were Heena's views. "Elections are very important, because if your elected member is not delivering then election is the only way to oust the person. I voted today since our village has developed lesser compared to other villages in our district," she said.

However, not all "first-time" voters were lucky to cast their ballot. In minority-dominated Kalana village of Sanand taluka — the country's emerging auto hub — nearly 200 youths could not cast their votes after they failed to receive their voter identity cards in time.

Akbar Malek, an 18-year-old youth, who was standing outside booth number 38, said, "We have not got the voter ID so far. We are among nearly 200 youths who have not received voter ID card."

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