ANI Photo | Election Commission signs MoU with Education Ministry; NCERT to add content on electoral literacy in textbooks

In a bid to address voter apathy among young Indians, the Election Commission and the Ministry of Education on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding to bring electoral literacy to classrooms across the country.
According to the MoU, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) will both introduce and update textbooks to include content on electoral literacy and will advise State Education Boards and other Boards to follow suit.
The MoU is intended to integrate voter education and electoral literacy into the curricular framework, starting from classes 6 to 12 in all schools.
election commission signs mou with education ministry ncert to add content on electoral literacy in textbooks 1 – The News Mill
Beginning with classes 6 to 12 in all schools, this integration will also extend to the curricular framework for all colleges and universities, tailored to suit different disciplines and credited accordingly.
“School and College students will soon learn about their future role and duties as voters in the election process, as part of the curricular and extra-curricular interventions in educational institutions. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on electoral literacy was signed today between the Election Commission of India (ECI) and the Ministry of Education,” the Ministry of Education said in a statement.
The MoU is aimed at extending the ECI’s flagship Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) in schools and colleges.
The MoU underscores the development of an institutional framework that seeks to incorporate electoral literacy formally into the school and college education system. This includes structured curricular, co-curricular, and extracurricular activities, all of which will help in preparing future and new voters for greater electoral participation and in effect strengthening democracy. It is crucial to capture the attention of young minds and educate them about the significance and value of their vote in every election.
Despite successfully managing and conducting elections by the Election Commission over the years in a fair and peaceful way along with a high jump in participation of the electors, there is also a concern that there were almost 297 million electors (out of 910 million) who did not cast their votes in General Election to Lok Sabha – 2019.
“The voting percentage was 67.4 per cent. The Commission has taken this as a challenge to improve upon,” it said.
This significant collaboration aims to empower young people by bridging the knowledge gap among the youth and first-time voters.
India boasts one of the world’s youngest populations, and the indifference of the youth towards the electoral process could potentially result in a future generation that is hesitant to engage in voting as adults.
Such apathy could have substantial consequences for the functionality of a thriving democracy.
“Therefore, this MoU is signed with the long-term vision of instilling electoral literacy in the young people through the educational institutions. This initiative is expected to help in the Election Commission’s endeavour to address the urban and youth apathy, leading to better electoral participation in the next general elections.,” it added.
However, the document also focuses on the orientation and training of teachers in effectively imparting electoral literacy in classrooms, establishing Electoral Literacy Clubs (ELCs) in schools and colleges and encouraging various activities to promote voter awareness among students.
It also seeks to evolve a robust mechanism to fulfil the aspirational goal of the ECI to hand over voter ID cards to every student immediately after attaining the age of 18

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