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Cabinet clears EC proposal to buy VVPAT-enabled EVMs

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Source: pib.nic.in

Following the Opposition’s protest over alleged EVM tampering,the Union Cabinet on Wednesday cleared the Election Commission (EC) proposal to buy new Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT)-enabled EVM machines.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced that the Centre will allot Rs 3174 crores for 16 lakh odd machines to BEL ECIL, and will be ready by September 2018, as needed by the Election Commission.

Since June 2014, the Commission has given at least 11 reminders to the government seeking funds for VVPAT machines.

The decision comes as the Opposition parties attacked the Election Commission for allegedly using “tampered” EVMs in the recent elections.

VVPAT is a machine which dispenses a slip with the symbol of the party for which a person has voted for. The voters see voter-verifiable paper audit trail slip for seven seconds.

In 2013, the Supreme Court had said that the Election Commission must introduce the new machines called VVPATs in phase and 2019 national election must be run entirely with these upgraded machines.

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