SC notice to EC on VVPAT, EVM discrepancy plea

The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice to the Election Commission on a plea challenging the legal provision which mandated six months jail if the complaint regarding discrepancies between EVMs and VVPATs did not prove to be correct.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna sought a response from the EC on a writ petition filed by Sunil Ahya.

Arguing himself, Ahya sought decriminalization of the act of filing complaint regarding discrepancies between EVMs and VVPATs.

At present under section 49 MA of Code Of Election Rules, if a person files a complaint regarding the discrepancy ( voted for a particular party but it went to some other party) and If the allegation is found to be false or incorrect then he could be prosecuted under section 177 of IPC for “furnishing false information.

The section carries six months in jail or a Rs 1000 fine or both.

Ahya contended that such a clause deterred an elector from reporting any “deviant behaviour and lodging a complaint which is an essential ingredient in a continuous exercise for improving the electoral process”.

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