Quraishi hints at changes in EVMs

“The current EVMs are doing fine. However, keeping in mind the complaints against the use of these machines, we have formed an expert committee to look into what changes and rectifications can be made in the machines. It (the committee) has already held discussions with various political parties on the issue and has taken their suggestions,” Quraishi said here.

In this context, he said a printer may be installed in the EVM which will issue paper slips to voters soon after they press the button to cast their votes.

The CEC and two other election commissioners (ECs) were in the Orissa capital to take part in a two-day zonal symposium organised by the commission to commemorate its diamond jubilee.

During the last general election, there were complaints from political parties in different states regarding the faulty and tampered EVMs. In states like Orissa, the Congress and  BJP had accused the ruling BJD of garnering votes with the help of tampered EVMs.

Quraishi said the EC was giving more emphasis to control the use of black money in the elections. “We have already chalked out new guidelines to control the use of black money in the elections which was successfully implemented during the recently held Bihar Assembly polls,” he said.

A new division called expenses monitoring division had also been created in the commission to have a close eye on the use of black money in the polls.

Quraishi strongly disapproved the “paid news” system adopted by political parties. He revealed that 86 cases of paid news had come to the notice of the commission during the last elections.

“In all these 86 cases, political parties and candidates had confessed that they had gone for paid news. Subsequently, they had agreed to include that in their expenses account,” he said.

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