Election Commission ducks issue of greater VVPAT usage

  1. The Chief Election Commissioner has said that committee on feasible threshold for VVPAT counting would submit its report before the conclusion of the Lok Sabha election 2019. The Election Commission of India had appointed a high-powered committee from the Indian Statistical Institute to devise a ‘scientific formula’ to arrive at the right percentage and sample of VVPAT slips that should be counted.
  2. Of late, many political parties have demanded before the Election Commission that 50% of the EVM results should be matched and cross-checked with VVPAT slips. It has been argued that this would increase voter confidence and make the electoral process more transparent. At present, VVPAT slips in one randomly chosen polling station per constituency are tallied with EVM results.
  3. Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) is an independent system attached to an EVM that allows the voters to verify that their votes are cast as intended. When a vote is cast, a slip is printed on the VVPAT printer containing the serial number, name and symbol of the candidate voted. This remains visible to the voter through a transparent window for seven seconds. Thereafter, the printed slip automatically gets cut and falls into a sealed drop box.