NEW DELHI: Amid the UID row, now it is the turn of the Election Commission to jump on the biometric bandwagon. For the first time, all voters for the upcoming Assembly elections in Goa will have to register their thumb imprints at the polling booths.
The EC officials say that sooner or later, “the EC will have to get the biometric data for the voters, and the Goa experiment is a pilot project”. Later, when the EC has all the biometric data of Indian voters, every voter will have to give their thumb imprints before casting their votes. “This will make the election process far more transparent and foolproof,” the officials added. Goa elections will be held on March 3. In another first, every voter in Manipur Assembly elections is being “photographed”. While electoral photo-ID cards are often a must for the voters while casting their ballot, the move to photograph every voter is inspired by some “localised factors”, the EC sources said. “Very often, there are allegations of impersonation during voting - that of various insurgents and their sympathisers casting votes in lieu of bonafide voters. The present move entails every voter, flashing their index finger with the indelible voter’s ink, captured on the camera,” the EC officials noted.
In addition to the Manipur voters, every voter in Goa will also be photographed with their index fingers, marked with the voter’s ink. There’s another initiative of the EC that is creating a buzz in Manipur -- provisions for “postal ballots” for insurgents, presently engaged in peace talks with the government.
“On the election eve, The Indian insurgents cannot go to the polling booth, so we provide them with postal ballot. The common objective, after all, is to bring the Indian insurgents to the mainstream,” an EC official said.