Bhubaneswar:12/2/19:The ‘Blue Button Express’ was launched Tuesday at a grand function held at Soochana Bhawan here by Odisha Election Watch (OEW) in association with the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and the People’s Cultural Centre (PECUC).
The drive is aimed at creating awareness among voters as part of the ‘My Vote My Country: My Vote Not for Sale’ campaign. The vans will run for 18 days and will cover all the 30 districts for creating awareness among voters.
The teams are led by social activist Govinda Patra and OEW’s State Programme Associate Kabya Sampad. Campaign material like posters and audio video CDs were also released at the function.
Ranjan Kumar Mohanty, the OEW’s state coordinator, said the main objective of the campaign was to create awareness about voters’ rights and responsibilities, the need for active participation in strengthening democracy, increase voter turnout, promote ethical voting and create a conducive environment for free and fair elections.
Anil Verma of ADR and the coordinator of National Election Watch emphasised the participation of youth in the awareness campaign.
He said voters should be well informed and must assess candidates before voting.
Speakers like Baikuntha Nath Panigrahi, former director of Doordarshan and OEW core team member Dr Seba Mohapatra, former Health and Family Welfare director and OEW core team member Anuradha Biswal, Olympian Ajay Choudhury and film producer Surjit Sen emphasised that voters should not allow themselves to be manipulated by candidates.
They should use their democratic rights to create a better future for the country without caste or religious bias and unfettered by muscle and money power, the speakers said.