Swaraj India, which will be making its electoral debut in the upcoming municipal elections, has asked the state election commission to ensure that voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) is used in all electronic voting machines (EVMs) during the upcoming civic body elections.
The VVPAT is a paper slip which comes out of the electronic voting machine (EVM) once a voter casts his vote. The paper slip shows which symbol and candidate the vote has been cast for. VVPAT is currently being used on an experimental basis in few EVMs by the Election Commission of India and it plans to introduce it fully by the 2019 general elections.
The demand for VVPAT comes amid questions being raised over the fairness of the electoral procedure using EVMs by a section of the political class. Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati and Aam Aadmi Party national convener Arvind Kejriwal both questioned the authenticity of EVMs following their defeat in the Uttar Pradesh and Punjab Assembly elections.
“Swaraj Abhiyan is committed to electoral reforms in order to make the people of India meet their political and democratic aspirations. To ensure complete transparency in the system, Swaraj Abhiyan demands that the forthcoming election to the Municipal Corporations of Delhi on EVMs is held with VVPAT,” the party said in a statement.
The party added that the Election Commission of India had already been introducing EVMs with VVPAT during various polls since 2013. Swaraj India wanted the Delhi election commission to do the same too as it expected complete transparency in the casting and counting of votes in the forthcoming corporation elections.