During assembly and Parliamentary elections, you go to cast your secret ballot at a Pooling Booth. Typically, 1000-1200 voters are assigned to one booth. Each polling booth has one Electronic Voting Machine (EVM).
When the results of elections are declared, people get to know which candidate got how many voters overall. That is for sure! But, election commission also declares the details to the tune of each EVM or Polling Booth. In other words, a candidate or party comes to know how many votes were polled in favor or against from that particular segment of voter population.
The Election Commission had recommended that the practice of declaring results at Booth level be abolished as it exposes the voters preferences to the political parties and candidates.
The Supreme Court asked the Central government yesterday while hearing a Public Interest Litigation: “Why are you sleeping over a 6 years old proposal of Election Commission to stop Booth-wise counting of votes”? The Center’s counsel replied: “The proposal has been sent to the Law Commission”.
What a lethargy pace! Our tortoise of the rabbit-tortoise story will be put to shame by the Indian government!
Abolition of declaration of results at the EVM-level is a much needed reform in our electoral democracy. Politicians with vindictive attitude exploit this information to take vengeance if voters of a particular booth(s) did not vote for him/her. Remember the incidence of Maharastra Chief Minister Ajit Pawar threatening voters in villages of Baramati Lok Sabha seat? Mr. Pawar was campaigning for his cousin Ms . Supriya Sule – a Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) candidate in the last Lok Sabha elections held a few months back.
Let us hope the wheels of Mr. Modi-led government would move faster as he won elections on the plank of ‘vikaas’!