Election Commission supports totalising votes before counting

Election Commission
Election Commission of India

New Delhi, March 5: The Election Commission (EC) on Monday told the Supreme Court it supported the demand of replacing booth-wise counting of votes with the totaliser system of counting in a bid to prevent disclosure of polling pattern at a particular booth.

The Election Commission told a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra that what the PIL petitioner Yogesh Gupta was seeking was already a part of their larger electoral reforms since 1998 and was reiterated on December 6, 2016, news agency IANS quoted.

The bench, also comprising Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice D.Y.Chandrachud, asked the poll panel to provide the Central government with all the documents regarding its recommendation on the mixing of EVMs ahead of the votes counting to eliminate the knowledge as for which party the voters at a particular polling booth voted.

While not opposing the petition for the mixing of EVMs before the counting of votes, the Centre said there were questions being raised about the credibility of EVMs and manipulation of the machines.

Appearing for the Centre, Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh stated that the Election Commission, while switching over to the totaliser system of counting votes, will have to ensure that there was no leakage of data or tampering of the machines and their genuineness is also kept intact.

The Centre also told the apex court that most of the political parties were opposed to mixing of EVMs before the counting of votes.

Following this, the court adjourned the matter for two weeks and gave one weeks time to Election Commission to submit its papers and gave one week time to the Central government to reply.


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