The Election Commission of India (ECI) has declared the use of Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) along with Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) to be implemented at every polling booth by 2019 general elections.
This declaration comes amidst the controversy of EVMs being tampered with.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati have alleged that EVMs were altered in the recently concluded Punjab and Uttar Pradesh elections. Kejriwal went on to AAP votes were transferred to Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) coalition in the Punjab Elections.
“Every electronic voting machine (hereinafter referred to as the voting machine) shall have a control unit and a balloting unit and shall be of such designs as may be approved by the Election Commission. Provided that a printer with a drop box of such design as may be approved by the Election Commission may also be attached to a voting machine for printing a paper trail of the vote, in such constituency or constituencies or parts thereof as the Election Commission may direct”
In the recently concluded Punjab elections, the use of VVPAT in 33 assembly segments proved to be a nightmare. During polling, about 187 of these machines were replaced, affecting 25 poll stations in Majitha and ten poll stations in Sangrur and Muktsar each. Out of the 6,293 VVPATs, about 255 failed during the actual poll.