The ongoing Lok Sabha Elections are the talk of the nation as they should be. And as someone who was going to vote for the first time, I felt a strong sense of responsibility.
Here is my detailed experience as to what voting for the first time was like.
Never in my life have I woken up before noon on a Sunday but this one didn't feel like the usual weekend.
I had a sense of anticipation knocking at my mind with the question; "how is this going to turn out?"
I also had a special piece of clothing saved up for the occasion.
Thanks to a certain stand-up comedian, this T-shirt definitely made me stand out in the crowd.
Though, I'm not sure whether the old Haryanvi uncles and aunties got the sarcasm.
My stars were definitely aligned that day because the polling station was a couple of minutes away from my house. But I had no idea what a polling station looked like and it was nothing like how I expected it to be. I was under the impression that I would have to go to a sarkari place with long queues and the whole process would take at least a couple of hours.
I thought I'll get to experience a crowd but instead I saw fewer people than at a movie show on a Monday morning.
All my life, I was told that never ask people who they voted for because the only person who should know who you voted for is yourself. But apparently, that isn't the case at all.
While waiting for my turn in the queue, all I could hear was people discussing who they were going to vote for; loud and open. Maybe the said 'protocol' is only in theory. I used to think the secret ballot held a lot of significance but apparently, it's just a myth.
I know this might sound insignificant but getting the ink on my finger really felt like achieving a milestone.
It was something I had always fascinated about as a child when my parents voted and now finally reaching a point in life where I am also getting it felt like a victory.
Also, my since my social media is full of political conversations, an inked finger was like a finishing stamp to my opinions.
I had read, seen pictures and written about EVMs but getting to finally see one in real life felt important.
To be honest, I was really nervous about whether I'll get enough time or what if I press the wrong button. Fortunately, nothing of the sort happened and I voted for exactly who I wanted to vote for (Shhh, unlike others, I will follow protocol).
Knowing how sad the voter turn out this year was, I couldn't help but feel a little selfish about my contribution.
I felt good about it that I cared enough when so many didn't. I felt like a responsible citizen to my country.
You know when you're feeling really good about something you've achieved in life but people around you do their best to bring down your spirits? That's exactly what happened when I met a few friends/acquaintances after casting my vote. These are some of the things they had to say.
"You've come all the way from Delhi to Panchkula to vote? Itni velli hai tu?"
To know that my own friends, people I love and care for, have this lazy and ignorant attitude towards such an important time is heartbreaking and at the same time, infuriating.
The next five years are going to define our nation and as citizens, it is our moral duty to make sure we contribute to the betterment of the nation instead of putting it at risk.
I'm back in Delhi and the only thing I am eagerly waiting for is the 23rd of May. After witnessing such disappointment in the voting turnout to people not being educated enough about how voting is super important, all I'm hoping for is that the nation has made the right decision.
Please go and vote.