Model Question and Answers for APSC | In the light of recent controversy regarding the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM), what are the challenges before the Election Commission of India to ensure the trustworthiness of elections in India?

In the light of recent controversy regarding the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM), what are the challenges before the Election Commission of India to ensure the trustworthiness of elections in India?

Model Question and Answers for APSC | In the light of recent controversy regarding the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM), what are the challenges before the Election Commission of India to ensure the trustworthiness of elections in India?

Ans: All of India's political parties recently voiced their concerns about the reliability of its electronic voting machines (EVMs). There have also been calls for paper ballots to be used once again. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has consistently asserted that its Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) are distinctive and that, thanks to its security protocol and administrative safeguards in place, tampering is not possible in actual election circumstances.

The challenges before the ECI to ensure the trustworthiness of elections in India:

  • Increased violence and electoral malpractices under influence of money have resulted in political criminalization, which ECI is unable to arrest.
  • Expressed concern against Electoral Bonds and their impact on free and fair election
  • Increased criminalization of politics, Political parties outside RTI
  • Election Commission is not adequately equipped to regulate the political parties. It has no power to enforce inner-party democracy and regulation of party finances. No ability to deregister parties for misconduct
  • ECI is becoming lesser independent of the Executive which has impacted its image.
  • Allegations of EVMs malfunctioning, getting hacked and not registering votes, corrodes the trust of the general masses in ECI.
  • Paid news continues to be a menace for the EC. While the EC has already taken up the issue with the law ministry, seeking that paid news be treated as a cognisable offence, nothing has been done so far.

Way Forward:

  • Power to deregister political parties
  • Make paid news electoral offence
  • Use of VVPAT
  • 2nd ARC report recommended that a collegium headed by the Prime Minister with the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, the Law Minister and the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha as members should make recommendations for the consideration of the President for the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and the Election Commissioners