Shimla: A cycling expedition aimed at creating awareness among the voters in view of upcoming Lok Sabha Elections-2024 (LSE) and Assembly bye-elections was flagged off by Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Maneesh Garg from the historic Ridge on May 14, 2024. Starting from Shimla the expedition will culminate at world’s highest polling station located at Tashigang (15256 feet) on May 20, 2024.

Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Maneesh Garg flagging off the expedition

CEO said that this seven-day cycling expedition from Shimla to Tashigang will create awareness among voters especially among the first time voters. He said that six people are participating in the cycling rally, out of which State election icon Jaspreet Paul and his team member Kshitij will go from Shimla till Tashigang while other four cyclists will be part of this expedition till Narkanda. The expedition will go to Tashigang via, Theog, Narkanda, Rampur, Rekong Peo, Nako, Kaza, Kaumik, Hikkim.

It is pertinent to mention that the expedition will pay tribute to the First Voter of Independent India Late Shyam Saran Negi on May 16 at Kalpa.

The CEO said that the main objective of this event is to ensure participation of maximum people in this election. In view of the LSE and AC bye-elections in the state, participation of all the eligible voters is very important. He said that the main objective of this expedition is to make people aware about the importance of voting.

414 kilometer long cycling expedition resonates with Misson 414

Garg said that the distance between Shimla to Kaza is 414 kilometers which also coincides with Election Department’s Mission 414 Systemnatic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) initiative. This Mission is aimed at increasing voting percentage at 414 polling stations, where the voting percentage was low in LSE-2019. He said that this time nearly three percent of total voters in the electoral rolls would exercise their franchise for the first time and this expedition would go a long way in engaging and sensitizing the  youth about their right to vote. The CEO said that the Election Department was organizing various types of events from time to time with the aim of making people aware about voting. In this series, a plan has been prepared to organize cycling rallies in nine districts on 25 and 26 May, 2024. Participation of maximum youth will be ensured in these rallies so that the voting percentage could be increased. On this occasion, Additional Chief Electoral Officer Dalip Negi, Returning Officer and District Electoral Officer Anupam Kashyap, Superintendent of Police Sanjeev Kumar Gandhi, Additional District Electoral Officer Abhishek Verma, OSD SVEEP Neeraj Sharma and other officers were also present.

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