The Election Commission (EC) of India on 22 January 2013 announced Saina Nehwal and Mary Kom as the National Icons to help promote, voter participation in India. Saina Nehwal and Mary Kom, both are Olympic Bronze Medalists in the London Olympics 2012, in Badminton and Boxing respectively.
Apart from these two, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the Captain of the Indian National Cricket Team and former President of India, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam are the existing National Icons of the Board and they will continue to be at the position.
The duo, Nehwal and Mary Kom are roped in to be the National Icons to attract youth voters in the age group of 18 to 19 years in age. In its drive to revise the voters’ list in 2012 by the poll panel they added 2.32 crore citizens to the national Voter List out of which 93 lakh were the first time voters.
The third National Voters Day would be observed by the Poll Panel on 25 January 2013 and some of the first-time voters would be given their photo identity cards on this day. The National Voters day is celebrated on the foundation day of the Election Commission.