Presentations on EVMs for opposition parties soon

The poll panel said that even though 1-2% of the voting machines had been hit by technical glitches, so far, there was no evidence that any machine had been tampered with.   

Published: 05th February 2019 08:28 AM  |   Last Updated: 05th February 2019 08:28 AM   |  A+A-

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, AAP leader Sanjay Singh and CPI leader D Raja after meeting with the chief election commissioner in New Delhi on Monday | naveen kumar

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Amidst questions on the credibility of electronic voting machines (EVMs), the Election Commission of India (EC) has planned to share EVM presentations with Opposition parties, senior officials of the poll body said on Monday.

EC officials who were familiar with the development said presentations will be made to clear any doubts surrounding the working of the EVMs and to educate viewers on the technical and administrative safeguards in place.

The poll panel said that even though 1-2% of the voting machines had been hit by technical glitches, so far, there was no evidence that any machine had been tampered with.   

Meanwhile, on Monday, a delegation led by Opposition leaders submitted a memorandum to the poll panel demanding the roll back of EVMs. “The ultimate goal of the signatories is to seek an expeditious reversion to physical paper balloting,” the memorandum said.

The letter said that as reverting to ballot papers was not possible, Voter verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines should be used with at least 50 per cent of the EVMs. “The EC should ensure that sample, physical counter check of the paper trail and matching it with the electronic vote should happen mandatorily in all, if not in at least 50% of all EVMs,” said the delegation’s letter to the EC.

The letter also referred to recent state polls saying, “In the recently-concluded elections in five states in December, 2018, there were many instances of EVMs malfunctioning in alarmingly high numbers. There were also reports of mismatch between votes polled and votes counted in MP and Telangana. In addition, instances of EVMs and Strong Rooms becoming vulnerable were widely recorded and reported.”

Not going back

Recently, CEC Sunil Arora had asserted, “We are not going back to the days of ballot paper. EVMs have been in use for more than two decades. And it has been a consistent policy for quite sometime and I think it will remain...”

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