India’s first voter dies in Himachal Pradesh, to be cremated with State honours

India’s first voter Shyam Saran Negi died on Saturday, November 5, 2022 at his residence in Himachal Pradesh’s Kinnaur. He was 106.
Believed to the first voter in the 1952 General Election, Negi was born on July 1, 1917 and retired as a schoolteacher, as per official records.

On November 3, Negi had cast his vote for the State’s Assembly polls through postal ballot, the Election Commission said.

Condolences pour in
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur took to Twitter to condole the death and said the thought that Negi exercised his right a few days ago despite ill health will always make him emotional.

Kinnaur Deputy Commissioner Abid Hussian Sadiq said Negi will be cremated with full State honours. The officer had felicitated the centenarian at his residence after the vote two days ago.

Negi was the brand ambassador for the Election Commission. Election officers from the district will attend his funeral, Himachal Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer Maneesh Garg said.

Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said on Twitter, “I am pained to learn about the passing away of India’s first voter Shyam Saran Negi. Adhering to his duty, he cast his vote for the 34th time on November 3 though postal ballot. This thought will always make me emotional.” An EC spokesperson said Negi was a man with exceptional faith in democracy.

“ECI mourns the demise of Shri Shyam Saran Negi. We are eternally grateful for his service to the nation,” the spokesperson said.

“He inspired millions to vote, even before his demise, he voted for Himachal Pradesh Assembly Elections 2022 through postal ballot on November 2, 2022,” the poll panel said on Twitter.

The BJP and the Congress, too, sent condolences to the Negi family.

“The BJP expresses deep sadness and condolences on the demise of independent India’s first voter Shyam Saran Negi. May God grant peace to the departed soul,” the party said

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