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'Enhance confidence in EVMs'

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, October 04, 2010
First Published: 22:57 IST(4/10/2010) | Last Updated: 23:03 IST(4/10/2010)

Leaders from different political parties asked the Election Commission on Monday to take steps to enhance confidence of people on use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) following allegations that the machines can be tampered.


At a meeting of all political parties on Monday, the BJP made a strong call for use of paper ballots on a trial basis. BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said his party suggested a paper trail as an acknowledgement that the vote has been cast in favour of a particular candidate. "Like EVMs were started as a pilot project, this concept should be launched in a small constituency... the EC should work on it," he said.

Congress leader Jayanthi Natarajan, however, said the paper trail should only be accessed with the permission of the court in case of a complaint.

Natarajan said suggestions to improve EVMs are understandable but said her party supported its use.

CPI leader D. Raja suggested enhancing the confidence of people on EVM use and said the EC should take steps to strengthen the system. CPM's Nilotpal Basu said the party raised the matter before the EC and the manufacturers, which have been clarified. "To ally the fears, whatever needs to be done should be done," he said.

The political parties also asked the commission to device a mechanism to curb the practise of paid news and use of muscle power and money in elections.

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