Elections: Usage of VVPATs and ETPBs in Elections and Electoral Bonds Case (Download PDF)

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VVPAT

Voter verifiable paper audit trial (VVPAT) is an independent system attached to an EVM. Allows the voters to verify that their votes are cast as intended. A slip is printed on the VVPAT printer containing the serial number, name and symbol of the candidate voted as soon as a vote is cast.

  • Through a transparent window the remains is visible for seven seconds.
  • Printed slip automatically gets cut and falls into a sealed drop box.
  • The printouts can be counted later.

Importance

  • The EVMs and VVPATs try and ensure that the massive election process is in tune with the latest technological advancements.
  • Utility in a free and fair electoral process.
  • VVPATs add another layer of transparency and reliability to convince voters about the sanctity of EVMs.
  • EVMs and VVPATs have also quicken the election process as counting votes on EVMs.
  • The EVMs and VVPATs are also environment-friendly as compared to paper ballots.

Electoral Bonds Case

  • The electoral bonds scheme
  • Present form fails to recognise the complementary nature of the rights to privacy and information

Electoral Bonds

  • Issued by a notified bank for specified denominations.
  • These bonds can be bought by those who want to donate to a political party by making payments digitally or through cheque.
  • Freedom to gift the bond to any registered political party.

Government՚s Rationale

  • The transactions through banks would incentivize the use of white money.
  • The KYC requirements of banks would ensure paper trails.

Two Fold Purpose

  • Enhances transparency in political funding
  • Protects the right to privacy of donors

Dilution of the Earlier Regulations

  • Both the purchaser of the bond and the political party receiving the money has a right to not disclose the identity of the donor.
  • Also the policy scraps several restrictions that previously checked illegal corporate sponsoring. For eg removing a cap on corporate sponsorship.
  • Even foreign donations are now allowed.
  • Earlier it was mandatory for the companies to be in existence for 3 years to make political donations which now has been removed.

Concerns

  • The only entity with full knowledge of the transactions will be the Central government as the bonds can only be issued by public sector banks.
  • Amplifies the opacity by not disclosing the identity of the donor.
  • The scheme undermines the complementary nature of the rights to privacy and information in making the state more transparent.

Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBs)

  • A flagship IT programme by the Election Commission of India.
  • Developed with the help of Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) .
  • For the use of the Service Voters.
  • Enables the entitled service voters to cast their vote using an electronically received postal ballot from anywhere outside the constituency.
  • It enables the voters to cast their vote on an electronically received postal ballot.
  • The preferred location is outside their originally assigned voting constituency.
  • It is a fully secured system with two layers of security.

Class of electors eligible for ETPBS:

  • Service Voters, other than those who opt for proxy voting (Classified Service Voters)
  • The wife of a Service Voter who ordinarily resides with him
  • Overseas Voters
  • The Privacy or the secrecy is maintained through the use of OTP and PIN and no duplication of casted Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot (ETPB) is possible due to the unique QR Code.

- Published/Last Modified on: April 29, 2020

Policy/Governance, Govt. Schemes/Projects, Committees/Govt. Bodies

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