No Flimsy Material for Voter Compartment, EC Tells Bihar

EC cited past experience to say in spite of specific instructions while some voting compartments made of cardboards are not of sufficient height, cloth used is transparent.

Published: 27th September 2015 11:20 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th September 2015 11:20 AM   |  A+A-


NEW DELHI: Seeking to ensure secrecy of votes, the Election Commission has issued a set of dos and don'ts to the Bihar poll machinery, including a directive not to use "flimsy material" for erecting voter compartments in polling booths as it would compromise privacy.

In a letter to the Chief Electoral Officer of Bihar, the EC has cited past experience to say "in spite of specific instructions" while some voting compartments made of cardboards are not of sufficient height, in others cloth used is of "poor quality" and transparent.

"In some instances, flimsy material like dhoti, lungi, saree, gunny bags have been used to make voting compartment. In such cases, the secrecy of voting could have been compromised," the poll watchdog said recently.

The Commission said the compartment should be made using opaque cardboard of reusable flexiboard with 'voting compartment' and symbol of EC printed on three sides.

The compartment should neither be near a door nor a window as it could mean compromising the secrecy of vote.

It said the table on which the balloting unit is placed in the compartment should be 2.5 feet tall to ensure that voters do not have problem registering their vote.

At the same time, the poll panel said the cable connecting the balloting unit (EVM) and the control unit should be in sight all the time and, in no case, be covered by cloth or any other material so that if it gets disconnected, it is visible to all.

In a bid to ensure that a voter does not tamper the machine with or disconnect the cable, the authorities have been asked to make a hole in the cardboard or flexiboard large enough to keep an eye on the cable. But at the same time the aperture should not be so big that it compromises the voter's secrecy.

Bihar Assembly polls will be held in five phases on October 12, 16, 28, November 1 and 5. Counting of votes will take place on November 8.

Follow The New Indian Express channel on WhatsApp


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp