VVPAT units to be used in next general elections

BJP leader Subramanian Swamy had moved court, pleading for directions to the election commission to use VVPAT units in all polling booths

GN Bureau | April 19, 2017


#EVM   #election commission   #union cabinet   #Subramanian Swamy   #politics  



The next general election will see the debut of the Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail Units (VVPAT). The move comes amid the criticism of electronic voting machines by BSP leader Mayawati, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and at least a dozen other opposition parties including the Congress, doubting the veracity of the EVM counting and demanding a paper trail to back it up.
 
Mayawati had blamed her party’s loss in Uttar Pradesh assembly election to faulty EVMs, and written a letter to the election commission. Kejriwal too blamed the EVMs for his party failing to make the cut in Punjab.
 
 
As many as 16,15,000 VVPAT units  will be purchased at a tentative unit cost of Rs19,650, and at a total estimated cost of Rs 3173.47 crore  from Bharat Electronics Ltd., Bengaluru, and Electronics Corporation of India Ltd., Hyderabad, the union cabinet decided Wednesday. 
 
There will also be allocation of additional funds to the tune of Rs 1,600 crore in the current financial year in the supplementaries/revised estimates for meeting the cash outgo envisaged for purchase of EVMs (control units & ballot units) and VVPAT units during the year 2017-18, payment of 40% of the amount as advance to the manufacturers and for provision of balance amount as may be required in 2018-19.
 
BJP leader Dr Subramanian Swamy had moved court in 2013, pleading for directions to the election commission to use VVPAT units in all polling booths. It was alleged in the petition, that the EVMs are not reliable and that there should be some device by which the voter should get a confirmation that the vote cast by him has been recorded in favour of the candidate of his choice.    
 
The election commission submitted that it has no objection to the introduction of VVPAT units for conduct of free, fair and transparent elections.  The supreme court in its order on October 8, 2013 directed that for implementation of such a system of VVPAT in phased manner, the government would provide required financial assistance. 

The VVPAT will act as an additional layer of transparency for the satisfaction of voters, allaying any apprehension in the minds of the voters as to the fidelity and integrity of the EVMs.
 
The idea of an additional layer of transparency for the satisfaction of voters in the form of a ‘voter verifiable paper trail’ was suggested by the political parties in a meeting taken by the election commission October 4, 2010.
 
As many as 20,300 VVPAT units were purchased by the election commission in 2013.  Since then, these units are being deployed in elections in select assembly and parliamentary constituencies.  Subsequently, order for 67,000 additional units was placed in 2015, out of which 33,500 units have been supplied by the manufacturers.
 
VVPAT device functions like a printer to be attached to the ballot unit and kept inside the voting compartment. When the voter presses the button against the name of the candidate of his choice on the ballot unit, the VVPAT unit generates a paper slip, called Ballot Slip.  This paper slip contains the name, serial number and symbol of the chosen candidate.  The voter can see this slip through a screen window where it stays for seven seconds, and then it automatically gets cut and falls into a sealed drop box. In this process, the slip will not go into the hands of the voter nor will others be able to see it.
 

Comments

 

Other News

On a personal note: DIVINE

An underground rapper who grew up on Mumbai streets, Divine spins his music around his environment and poverty. His breakout single, ‘Meri Gully Mein’, along with fellow rapper Naezy caught Bollywood’s attention. The Hindi film ‘Gully Boy’ is inspired by their lives and gr

The role model for an IAS officer

Anil Swarup, an IAS officer of Uttar Pradesh cadre who retired in 2018, is a model bureaucrat who retained his optimism right till the end of service and exemplified dedication and commitment. His excitement at the opportunities that a job in the IAS provided is evident on every page of his new book publis

Reform of the civil services: At home and away

The question of reform of the civil services has been debated extensively at all levels at least over the last five to six decades after independence. Indeed, it was soon perceived that the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) may not be well equipped to deal with the problems of an emerging developing coun

The greatest challenge for any government

Shouting vengeance at all and sundry while wriggling out of holes of our own making seems to be our very special national characteristic. Some recent instances are illustrative of this attribute. A number of business tycoons with thousands of crores of unresolved debts have fled abroad with the government

The mysterious case of CBI’s legality

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) came into existence, based on a Resolution of the home ministry, dated April 1, 1963 – a sheer coincidence that it also happens to be April Fool’s day. Over the past few months, we have seen the CBI live up to its founding day with great zeal, being i

The Evolution of Modi

Gujarat was passing through a turbulent phase in the 1980s. The decade began middle class agitations against new reservation policies, and the caste friction turned communal under the watch of chief minister Madhavsinh Solanki, alienating majority of urban population on both counts. The ground was ripe for

Current Issue

Current Issue

Video

CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter