Nikhil Kumar, Director of EVMs, Election Commission of India explains about EVMs.
Electronic Voting Machines or EVMs are used during state and central elections. EVM first used in Parur constituency in Kerala in 1982.
It has control unit, ballot unit, VVPAT and voting compartment. VVPAT(Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail) is a new entrant in the election framework.It was used for the first time in 2013 in Noksen constituency, Nagaland
EC experimented with VVPATs in 2014 general elections and ballot unit has serial numbers, names and symbols of candidates.
The control unit is with the presiding officer and ballot unit and VVPAT are kept in the voting compartment.
A voter can cast his vote in complete secrecy. VVPATs to be used with all EVMs in 2019 general elections.
Is the process transparent?
50 votes cast in the mock poll in presence of voting agents and votes counted in the control unit and tallied with slips from VVPAT.
How is the vote finally cast?
Presiding officer presses ballot button on control unit. Red light indicates machine is ready. Simultaneously, a green 'ready' light glows on ballot unit.
Ballot unit is now ready to accept the vote. Voter presses blue button representing his choice of candidate
Red light glows on ballot unit and a slip gets printed in the VVPAT. The slip in the VVPAT is visible for 7 seconds
Beep sound signals vote has been recorded successfully and the slip falls into VVPAT's ballot slip compartment.Ballot slip compartment is sealed and not accessible during voting process.
VVPAT allows a voter to verify his/her vote and the slip has serial number, name and symbol of chosen candidate.
Slips can be counted if candidate or agent requests for a recount. Commission mandates one polling station per constituency for compulsory verification of slip count with electronic count.
Slips can be verified on court orders as well.
Can EVMs be hacked? What are the safeguards?
EVMs used by EC are standalone, non-networked and tamper proof