A Scene at A Polling Booth
General Elections are held after every five years in our country. Every time the elections are held our school building is taken over and converted into an election booth. I am yet too young to vote but at the time of elections I become curious and visit my school and watch the scene there.
Early in the morning, policemen accompanied by the officials who conduct elections, reach the school. They bring big ballot boxes with them. They occupy the big hall of our school. All the doors and windows are closed, only two doors are left open. On the door they fix up a card with the word ‘Entrance’ written on it. Bars are fixed on both sides of this door and thus a narrow pathway is made through which only one man can pass at a time.
Other persons now arrive. They belong to different parties contesting the elections. They introduce themselves to the Presiding Officer. He attends them and makes them sit in. in a row inside in hall, near the door. They sit inside-as watch dogs on behalf of their respective candidates to see that only bonafide voters enter the hall. All these persons belong to our locality and recognize most of the voters. Soon the voters come. They form a queue before the entrance. They enter the hall one by one, take their ballot paper from the officials, Mark it with black ink and go behind the curtains to cast votes. They tick mark before the name of the candidate whom they want to elect, fold the paper and put it inside the box. Then they go out of the other door.
The crowd of voters, meanwhile, keeps on causing a lot of trouble to the officials who cannot entertain them all at one time. Old, sick, handicapped persons are brought by their relatives. The polling booth, with the eager crowds and enthusiastic volunteers gives the look of a voter’s fair. And a fair it is a national fair which comes after every five years.