Monday, March 8, 2010 | By: CHIMI DORJI

Lecture on transparancy in use of Electronic Voting Machines(15th February, 2010)

 Unlike most of the other countries’ democracy the Bhutanese democracy was born only after invention of EVMs which has aided to pull through first ever Bhutanese parliament election process very easily and successfully. But did Bhutan realize EVMs are tamperable? Certainly!, No body might have thought about this fact for many saw for the first time and used it for first time as well ,  rather everybody’s thought was driven to advantages track only .
Like many Bhutanese folks I too did not know about this fact not latter than recently when two persons, Till Dr. Jaegar from Germany, a specialist in Copyright and Media law who had won a judicial verdict against EVMs from German Supreme Court and V.V. Rao, an activist in fighting for transparency and accountability in Indian EMVs, came to our University to harangue on transparency in use of EVMs.
Both of them said that though the use of EVMs, unlike paper ballot, economies the time required for counting the votes and many other malpractices related to elections, however, EMVs being man made machines, are tamperable. They also said that they evidenced and demonstrated how it is tamperable.
Dr, Till Jaegar challenged before Germany Supreme Court and won the verdict against use of EVMs and accordingly German Supreme Court banned the use of EVMs in German elections.
V.V. Rao who has observed malfunctioning of EVMs in the last Indian Parliament elections filed PL before Indian Supreme Court. He said that before filing PIL he conducted through survey on use of EVMs and got similar results from all places that there is something wrong with use of EVMs. He also said that EVMs do not assure whether the vote is counted against the person whom voters have voted? or Neither there is proof that vote is counted to candidate against whom voters have voted?.
V.V. Rao was directed by Supreme Court to deal with matter with Election Commission of India (ECI) but despite his consistent effort to convince the Election Commission that EVMs are tamperable the ECI did not allow them even to demonstrate fully how EVMs are tamperable rather ECI said that EVMs cannot be tampered.
Whether to use EVMs in Indian elections is still in pipe line as the matter is still pending but what about to our Bhutanese elections. Though we have passed through first parliament election with use of these EVMs successfully, but would Bhutan be able to use EVMs through out the life of Bhutanese democracy? who knows the day may come to face Germans' fate also, as Bhutanese EVMs are not different from the ones used by Germans and Indians.Anway lets wait and see in the next elections till democracy subsists.


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