Civil Society Members Demand Counting of 'All VVPAT Slips' for 'Fullest Transparency'
"If free and fair elections are integral to the running of our democracy, the voter has to be provided with a mechanism where the casting of a vote is visible, and apparent to his or her understanding."
New Delhi: Members of civil society have released a statement demanding the counting of all VVPAT slips for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Recommending that “the VVPAT slips be recognised as the ballot paper”, the statement calls for the counting of every voter slip.
Asserting that the vote is a “citizen’s basic right that gives legitimacy, strength and body to the will of the people”, the statement – signed by Aruna Roy, Jayati Ghosh, Justice A.P. Shah, Sanjay Parikh and Syeda Hameed – asserts that the “voter cannot be compelled to repose her trust in an alien device”.
Pointing out the 2009 verdict by a German constitutional court, that struck down the “exclusive use of EVMs for recording and counting of votes and explained the rationale of a paper ballot for purposes of transparency and credibility”, the civil society members maintained that all ballots should be counted to “eliminate the doubts that are raised about manipulation and malfunction of the machines”.
Furthermore, the members also suggested that to “strengthen transparency and voter confidence”, in the future, “the VVPAT slip should be generated and received by the voter who will themselves drop the slip in the ballot box” as “the final act of casting of the vote”.
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