Counting of more VVPATs: SC to decide next week

Counting of more VVPATs: SC to decide next week

The Supreme Court. DH file photo

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to consider next week a plea by 21 opposition parties seeking to reconsider its order of April 8 on increasing VVPAT verification from just one to five EVMs per Assembly segment in a Parliamentary constituency.

In their review petition, the opposition party leaders said, “till now, the credibility of EVMs was not the main issue. However, due to subsequent developments, it has been seriously called into question. The number of EVMs to be randomly checked against VVPAT deserved to be increased.”

The petitioners originally wanted to increase VVPAT verification to at least 50 % of the EVMs during the counting of votes in the general elections 2019. They claimed merely 2% increase brought in by the court would not make substantial or meaningful change in the situation.

Senior advocate A M Singhvi submitted before a bench presided over by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi that the review petitions along with an application for open court hearing have been filed which may be urgently considered. The court allowed his plea and put the matter for consideration in next week.

In view of reports of “large-scale mismatching of votes with the VVPAT” during the three phases of polls already held, the parties led by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu once again approached the apex court.