World | India

Bihar opposition want end to voting machines

Parties cite examples of US and Germany which have done away with the practice

  • By Lata Rani, Correspondent
  • Published: 00:00 December 10, 2010
  • Gulf News

Patna: Rattled by their disastrous results in the just-held assembly polls, major Opposition parties in Bihar have begun seeking the restoration of the old ballot system for voting.

Questioning the authenticity of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs), they said they had doubts over transparency in voting with the electronic system.

All the major opposition parties, such as Rashtriya Janata Dal, Lok Janshakti Party and the Congress party have raised doubts over authenticity of the EVMs currently being used for voting, saying the Election Commission (EC) of India should initiate appropriate and immediate steps to restore faith of the masses in the election process.

"The EC should consider use of ballot papers [in the elections] for everyone's satisfaction since there is no guarantee of transparency in the EVMs being used for voting by the electors," Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan told a press conference in Patna on Thursday, citing examples of United States and Germany which have done away with them.

Options

He said the poll panel could also provide both options — EVMs and ballot papers — to voters to choose from during the voting adding he would raise the demand during a political parties' meeting with the EC on December 23. "I was perplexed with election results as the outcome defied voting patterns in several constituencies where our candidates were expected to win", he said.

The Congress too has questioned the authenticity of the voting machines and demanded a thorough inquiry into complaints of tampering and hacking of EVMs.

Gulf News