JOURNEY FROM BALLOT PAPERS TO EVMS: HOW INDIA VOTES

Siddharth Bangar

Abstract


What happens when a constitutional body entrusted with conducting fair and transparent elections of the largest democracy in the world comes under intense scanner? This research study depicts the transformation in the process of conducting elections in India. A comprehensive study exhibiting the journey from archaic voting process involving ballot papers to the latest electronic voting machines. But as serious doubts have been casted even on the technological soundness of these electronic machines especially keeping in mind that various advanced countries have junked these machines and preferred ballot papers, a debate ensued in India to replace the same with the traditional method of ballot papers. However disregarding all these allegations, Election Commission of India has moved a step ahead and announced to introduce these electronic voting machines with voter verifiable paper audit trail, a method providing feedback to the voters verifying if their vote has gone to the intended candidate. This method will eliminate the chances of electronic voting machines getting tampered and will immensely restore the confidence of the voter in the electoral system making his vote count in the real sense.

Keywords


Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail, Electronic Voting Machine, Election Commission of India, VVPAT, EVM

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References


- The Constitution of India, 1950

- The Representation of People Act, 1951

- Status paper on Electronic Voting Machine, Election Commission of India

- A.C. Jose vs. Sivan Pillai, 1984 SCR (3) (74)

- A.I.A.D.M.K & Ors. Chief Election Officer, 2002 (1) UJ 387

- Michael B. Fernandes vs. C.K. Jaffer Sharief And Ors., AIR 2004 Kant 289

- A.I.A.D.M.K & Ors. vs. Chief Election Commissioner & Ors., Writ Petition No. 3346 of 2001 Madras High Court

- Julian Siddle, US scientists 'hack' India electronic voting machines, BBC News, (18.05.2010), https://www.bbc.com/news/10123478

- Shreya Biswas, Why is America, a first-world country, still using paper ballots for the US Presidential Elections?, India Today, (04.11.2016), https://www.indiatoday.in/fyi/story/us-presidential-elections-paper-ballots-e-voting-350273-2016-11-04

- Guy Faulconbridge, Venezuelan election turnout figures manipulated by one million votes: election company, Reuters, (02.08.2017), https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-politics-vote-smartmatic/venezuelan-election-turnout-figures-manipulated-by-one-million-votes-election-company-idUSKBN1AI1KZ

- Supreme Court Order dated 08.10.2013 in Subramanian Swamy vs. Election Commission of India


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