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SC Issues Notice To Election Commission On A Plea Filed By 21 Political Parties For 50 Percent VVPAT Verification

The Supreme Court today (March 15, 2019) has issued a notice to the Election Commission of India (ECI) on a petition filed by the leaders of 21 political parties seeking Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) verification of at least 50 per cent of EVMs in the upcoming 2019 general elections.

A Bench comprising of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and JusticesDeepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna has asked the ECI to give its response on March 25, 2019, the next date of hearing.

The petitioners challenged the present system of ECI to verify VVPAT of only one randomly selected booth of a constituency and said that this system accounts only for 0.44% of the votes polled.

It was stated that "A 50% randomised verification in each assembly constituency/assembly segment is a reasonable sample size to both (a) allay the fears of the general public with regard to EVM tampering and; (b) be a statistically significant sample size to ensure that EVMs are working properly.” VVPAT is a feature to verify the vote polled by a voter.  When a voter casts his vote, a paper slip is generated by the Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) recording the party to whom the vote was made. This slip is delivered to a sealed ballot compartment which could be verified in case of any dispute.


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