EC to brief parties on May 12
The Election Commission has convened an all-party meeting on May 12 to discuss the concerns about the reliability of electronic voting machines and is likely to brief the parties about its planned EVM hacking challenge.
A statement from the Commission said at the May 12 meeting, the issue of EVMs, change in rules regarding recount of votes using paper trail data, making bribery in elections a cognisable offence and disqualification of candidates charge- sheeted for electoral bribery would be discussed.
While there was no mention of the proposed EVM hacking challenge in the statement, a senior Commission official, who refused to go on record, said an overview of process and procedure of EVM challenge would be given and views of the parties would be sought.
The date of the proposed challenge, he said, would be decided after the all-party meeting.
"The Election Commission has convened a meeting with all recognised national and state political parties on May 12 in New Delhi to discuss the issue related to EVM and VVPAT.
"In addition to the EVM/VVPAT, the agenda will also cover making bribery in elections a cognisable offence, disqualification on framing of charges for the offences of bribery in elections and suggestions in VVPAT recount Rules.
The EC has sought written response from all the parties on the above issues by May 7," the statement said.
Recently, 16 opposition parties had urged the ECI to revert to ballot system, claiming that the faith of the people in EVMs has been "eroded".