EVMs are ‘wonder machines’, says Election Commission official

Amid debate over merit of Electronic Voting Machine in elections, a senior Election Commission official Thursday described EVMs as “wonder machines” that have eased the process of voting and counting since 1982.

The EVMs have been made universal in all elections in the country since 2004, the official said. Deputy Election Commissioner Chandra Bhushan Kumar was talking to reporters here after reviewing the preparedness of election officers in poll-bound Meghalaya.

Elections are due in the state early next year, as the tenure of the current Assembly ends on March 6.

“EVMs have eased the process of voting and counting… it has evolved in such a manner where it has been branded as a wonder machines,” he said.

“Our visit is a preparatory visit so that the election machinery of the state gets its required orientation in terms of preparedness in all fronts to ensure that the ensuing election is successful,” he added.

The EC official said the attachment of a second line of verification – the Verifiable Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail – to the EVM has “left no rooms for doubts” since voters can physically verify who they vote for.

“With the introduction of VVPAT, nothing is left to doubt because the printed paper slip is like a ballot paper slip,” Kumar said.

He said the Commission had first put EVMs to use in poll in 1982. Nearly 18 lakh people of the 3.2 million population of Meghalaya are eligible to vote. The Commission has identified 3,082 polling booths in the state, an increase of 597 from the last Assembly elections.

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