Election Commission’s all-party meet to begin shortly, paper ballots, domestic migrant voting on agenda
Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections 2019, the Election Commission has scheduled a meeting with all recognised national and state political parties today in New Delhi. All the 7 registered national political parties and 51 regional parties have been invited to participate in the meeting. The agenda for discussion include: the place of electoral rolls, capping on political parties’ expenditure, timely submission of annual audited reports by parties, call for paper ballots, inclusion of print media as a medium on which appeal for vote prior to election can be made and to curb the use of social media in the last 48 hours before conclusion of polling.
The EC will also discuss gender representation in political parties and would invite views on measures that political parties can take in this regard. According to media reports, the parties that are likely to attend the meeting are: Congress, Trinamool Congress (TMC), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S), Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Samajwadi Party, CPI-M, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), DMK, CPI, YSR Congress, Kerala Congress Mani (KCM) and AIUDF.
The EC is also likely to inform the parties about the progress that has been made in acquiring latest EVMs and paper trail machines ahead of the LS polls. The opposition parties have expressed their dissatisfaction over the use of EVMs and have conveyed their demand to use paper ballots.
The EC will also focus on the issue of domestic migrants working in different states who fail to exercise their voting right due to the distance required to travel to their home state. The Commission is mulling to introduce online voting, proxy voting or votes sent by post in consultation with all the political parties for domestic migrants.