My Vote My Right with Sanjeev Kumar, Chief Electoral Officer of Karnataka

During the nominations process, the candidates need to submit an affidavit which includes details on their assets, legal cases, if any, and other allegations. All the information regarding candidates is available on the ECI or ACI website. Also, there is a limit on the amount one candidate can spend on canvassing, and this amount needs to be transparent.

“Many candidates in India use their muscle power to get people to vote for them. We recognise such people and support the voters by protecting them and punishing the ones bribing. ‘1950’ is a toll-free number calling which one can register complaints – an acknowledgement number to follow up on the same will be provided to the caller. Citizens Vigil is an app which can be downloaded on the mobile phone and if one comes across candidates who are giving out money, alcohol, or threatening people to vote for them, and any other offences, then it can be recorded and sent through. The app will not show who sent the video. Within 15 minutes, a magistrate will come to the place in a mobile squad and send a report to the Election Commission. Please spread this information wider and farther, and help enable ethical voting.”

One week before the voting day, slips will be distributed to the voters with their names and polling booth details.

“The Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) is designed with a set of technical specifications. Its working will be demonstrated in front of political parties, and using sealed containers, police security, and electronic GPS tracking, it will be sent to respective polling booths. In front of the political parties again, the machines will be removed and placed in the booth and before elections, mock polls will be held three times and will be updated on sheets. These machines don’t have wireless connections and no radio waves can be connected to hack the system. From the beginning to the end, no one can touch these machines because they are highly protected by the central police, state police and other candidates of political parties. Each EVM and VVPAT will have a multi-digital number with which we can recognise the machines and where they are being used.”

Each instrument, after the first-level checking and mock checking, will be paper-sealed – this is a special one, like our currency note. This is prepared in the Government Press and this also has a multi-digital number attached. Political party representative will add numbers and cross-check them during counting so that no one messes up.

“On election day, voting starts at 7 am, but before that, at 6 am, a mock voting process will be conducted in front of political party representatives. There is no worry about hacking the system as on the last date of candidate withdrawal, while preparing final candidates’ buttons, no party can know the location of their button on the EVM.”

Listen in for more…

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