Concern over EVM natural
Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda yesterday said it is quite natural that there would be some concern among the political parties about the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs).
“Concern remains among the people about any new technology and its uses. As the EVM is a new technology and the political parties don't know about it, it is quite natural that there would be some concern among them about the use of the machine,” he said.
The CEC was addressing a workshop on EVM at the Election Training Institute in the capital's Agargaon.
Huda said the use of EVM in the upcoming national election would depend on enactment of law, training of polls officials and acceptance of all stakeholders.
If the government brings in necessary laws and a congenial atmosphere is created, then the EC will think about using EVMs in some constituencies, he added.
Talking to journalists on Sunday, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said EVMs should not be imposed hurriedly as the machines need to be introduced on a limited scale in national elections.
“Many countries have the EVM system. I was always and am still in favour of it. Yes, it's right that it shouldn't be imposed hastily as it's a matter of practice. We'll have to examine it,” she said while addressing a press conference at the Gono Bhaban.
About the purchase of EVMs, the CEC yesterday said the government and the finance ministry would look into the matter as the EC didn't have any fund for this purpose.
Huda further said the commission faces many difficulties in using ballot papers under the existing manual voting system as it needs to use many documents and tools.
On August 30, the EC decided to send a proposal to the government for amending the electoral laws so it can use EVMs in the national polls, likely to be held in late December.
The EC made the decision at a six-hour meeting, chaired by the CEC.
The decision came two days after EC Secretary Helaluddin Ahmed said they were planning to use EVMs in some 100 out of the 300 constituencies.