Punjab Elections: EVMs to have candidates’ photos to prevent confusion

Punjab Elections EVM

The Election Commission of India has decided to paste photo of each contestant next to his or her poll symbol on the electronic voting machine (EVM) during elections in five state, including Punjab, early next year.

The chief election commissioner (CEC) Naseem Zaidi, who is on a three-day visit to Chandigarh, said this on Monday.

In a meeting with the CEC on Sunday, political parties brought the issue to his notice, saying there was a trend of fielding namesakes of opponent candidates to mislead the voters.

Punjab chief electoral officer VK Singh said the feature will be introduced for the first time in Punjab and the experiment had been done during the assembly polls in Assam, West Bengal, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and Kerala earlier this year.

Presiding over a meeting of the deputy commissioners and the senior police officers, Zaidi said the election commission has launched a single-window platform using information and communication technology (ICT) to be in touch with the voters, political parties, civil societies and media for transparent polling.

He launched three online applications–Samadhan, Suvidha and Sugam—that have a complaint monitoring system, besides other features.

Candidates and political parties can apply online for different permissions, such as for holding polls meetings and rallies, use of vehicles, setting up election office, using loudspeakers, helicopters and helipads during election campaign on these apps.