Utkarsh Kale, a 20-year-old student of Nowrosjee Wadia College, will vote for the first time this year. His decision to vote has nothing to do with the ‘voter awareness campaigns’ launched by the civic bodies, and everything to do with the attractive discount on cinema tickets on offer for voters.
Kale, a film enthusiast, has even managed to convince six of his classmates to cast their votes in the civic elections on February 21.
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The Multiplex Association of India in Pune has announced a 15 per cent discount on ticket prices for voters who come to the cinema hall after voting on election day. Prakash Chaphalkar, a member of the All India Multiplex Association who is also the owner of Mangala, a multiplex which was a single-screen theatre till a few years ago, said, “The multiplexes are supporting the move whole-heartedly.
Every election, the government declares a public holiday on voting day, but instead of voting, people spend time visiting malls and multiplexes. This move will motivate patrons to vote and avail the discount.”
In yet another move to motivate people to vote, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation on Friday announced that cab service Uber is offering 50 per cent discount to voters who visit polling booths located within five kilometres. The Pune Restaurants and Hoteliers Association has also announced that all the establishments under the association will offer free desserts to those who visit these places after casting their votes.
Ganesh Shetty, association secretary and Kishor Sarpotdar, vice-president, shared that all the hotels have been asked to put up attractive posters, banners and pamphlets announcing the offer, in a bid to motivate people to vote. On a lighter note, Kedar Satpute, a software professional, said, “Voting is a social, moral and civic responsibility… but local residents should also see the practical side of it. Free dessert, discount on movie tickets and cheaper rides to polling booths, after all, is not a bad deal.”