If things go as planned, each Indian voter will soon be able to get an option to vote online
Taru Bhatia | February 25, 2016 | New Delhi
The election commission of India (ECI) is exploring the use of information technology in the voting process, as stated by the chief election commissioner, Nasim Zaidi, at an international seminar organised by ECI on Tuesday, titled ‘leveraging technology for transparent and credible elections’.
Gujarat government is the first and only state that has introduced e-voting facility to its citizens.
Moreover, he mentioned that to facilitate overseas Indians voters, the ECI is also developing an e-postal ballot facility. “We have recommended legislation on providing this facility. A safe technology has also been developed along with operational guidelines. The technology is being validated and tested currently,” Zaidi said.
ECI has set several digital goals to make electoral process in the country more integrated and transparent. These goals are part of e-governance vision 2020. Zaidi mentioned the key areas where focus would be -- to develop a national database that would serve all election-related information, to link each voter to information technology tools such as internet, smart phones, IVRS and SMS, to employ mobile technology for voting and grassroots work, to encourage the use of biometric GPRS-enabled handheld device to initiate doorstep electoral services and to develop a voice-based voting mechanism.
Addressing the challenges that come along with this technology, Zaidi said, “Employing internet voting or online voting may be explored by ECI in the long term though it will require serious consideration of the challenges posed by technology. We have to weigh between perceived and actual benefits with perceived and actual challenges associated with online voting. Security, secrecy of voting with encryption and end to end verification of voter are some of the most important considerations”.
Hence having a secure infrastructure is sacrosanct for the goal to be a success. “The biggest challenge in using information and communication technology (ICT) is ICT security, certification and third party auditing. No electoral democracy can afford to have a technology that fails at its simplest and can be manipulated or subjected to malpractices. This can demolish the credibility of elections,” Zaidi said.
Sharing the achievements of the ECI over deploying the technology, Zaidi said that 38 IT applications have been developed and innovated at state and district levels. These applications have been categorised into providing services to voters, political parties, core election management with transparency and information sharing.
Today, Nirmala Sitharaman, India’s first woman full-time defence minister, may appear a picture of poise and confidence. But 11 years ago, she wasn’t even sure if she should join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has allowed her political career – and, of course, her abilities &ndas
On his first visit to Varanasi after the Uttar Pradesh polls, PM Modi announced and laid foundation stones of various projects on Friday and Saturday. Addressing a public meeting in Varanasi on Saturday, PM Modi took took a jibe at the opposition saying that the BJP’s programmes are no
Union minister for civil aviation, P Ashok Gajapathi Raju unveiled a new campus of the Indian Aviation Academy (IAA) spread over 5.33 acres. Civil aviation, secretary, R N Choubey said India is poised to attain its coveted place on global aviation arena as one among top three largest aviatio
Attributing enhanced focus on project execution as the reason behind Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited’s (BHEL) growth, the enterprise’s CMD Atul Sobti said BHEL achieved a capacity addition of 45,274 MW during the 12th five year plan period (2012-17) and surpassed the target of 41,661 MW by 9 p
Bhadiya from Bhanpur Kheda village does not know her age. She has five children – the eldest one is 12-year-old while the youngest is an infant. Considering she got married in her teens – like most women in her village – Bhadiya must be in her 30s. After giving birth to five children she
Steel authority of India (SAIL) chairman PK Singh expressed confidence on improving the performance of the Maharatna PSU in the current fiscal because of a host of initiatives in almost every area of operations. During 45th annual general meeting of the company, Singh said the world steel as