To check bogus voting, the Election Commission (EC) on Friday decided to use a person’s 12-digit biometric-based Aadhaar number while updating electoral rolls across India."We have held discussions with the unique identification authority on leveraging Aadhaar database to check bogus voting," an EC functionary said. The process in Delhi is likely to start after the Delhi assembly elections.
Once Aadhaar numbers are linked to electoral rolls, the EC will have biometric reading machines at polling booths for online authentication of voters before they are allowed to vote. The machines will be connected to the Aadhaar database for biometric authentication.
The government has already decided to enrol all eligible persons above the age of five for Aadhaar by March 2015. This would mean that every voter by then will have an Aadhaar number and the EC will demand the number while updating the electoral rolls.
“We keep getting complaints of bogus and duplicate votes. One of the best ways to ensure that a person votes only once in the country is to link electoral rolls with Aadhaar numbers. It will be a very tedious and time-consuming exercise and we can start it only when elections are over,” Delhi’s chief electoral officer Vijay Dev said.
“We will organise special camps for people to first enrol for Aadhaar and then for the electoral rolls, especially in areas where the enrolment for both Aadhaar and voter card is extremely low. We will tie up with the district administration for this,” Dev said.
Former chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party national convenor Arvind Kejriwal had complained to the CEO that fake votes were allegedly being cast in different constituencies. The electoral office also stumbled upon some names in the electoral rolls, pointing towards a bigger racket.
“Lot of political parties come to us, especially when elections are around the corner with complaints of bogus voting. But these parties often fail to provide us with any kind of evidence to corroborate their charges. Though we keep an eye on duplicate and bogus votes, we need to need to make our system more secure,” Dev added.
According to election officers, a voter moving from one city to another or from one assembly constituency to another constituency needs to get his name deleted from the previous area and get registered in the new area.