CPI wants digitally designed symbol on EVMs

Since the first general elections in 1951-52, the CPI has been fighting on 'Corn and Sickle' symbol, the only party to do so in Indian electoral history, and it feels that the present depiction of its symbol is not clear enough.

Who doesn't want a change and CPI too wants one this election — it wants the Election Commission to abandon the 'hand drawing' of its symbol and use a digitally drawn image on Electronic Voting Machines for clarity.

Since the first general elections in 1951-52, the party has been fighting on 'corn and sickle' symbol, the only party to do so in Indian electoral history, and it feels that the present depiction of its symbol is not clear enough.

The CPI has now approached the EC with party general secretary S Sudhakar Reddy on Monday writing to Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora requesting him to "use a high quality digitally created image of the same election symbol".

"The CPI is proud of its electoral heritage and is the only party to have contested all elections since independence on the same election symbol...However, the clarity of the election symbol on EVMs is very poor," Reddy said.

After the split in the CPI, the CPI (M) chose Hammer, Sickle and Star symbol. The Congress had got its 'Hand' symbol in 1977 after a split while its earlier versions had ''Two bullocks with a yoke on' and 'Cow and Calf'.

In the first General Elections, the symbol 'Hand' was allotted to All India Forward Bloc (Ruikar Group) while it went to Akali Dal in 1962 polls. The BJP, which was formed in 1980, chose 'lotus' instead of its predecessor Jan Sangh's 'diya'.

Reddy said it appeared that the hand drawing prepared in 1952 is still being used "though the printing technology has evolved" much since then.

Emphasising that his party is of "downtrodden and working class and clarity of symbol is essential for easy identification", he said. It would be appreciable if the EC could move to colour printing of symbols, he added.

"If that is implemented the symbols would be more easy to identify...The numerous complaints of similarity of symbols will then be addressed," he said.

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