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Press Releases

  

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  1. Estimated Voter Turnout of Phase-2 of Lok Sabha Elections

    The estimated turnout Parliamentary Constituency wise data for the second phase of elections of Lok Sabha.
    The real-time data can be seen from the Mobile App > Voter turnout App.
    (Final Voter turnout is awaited as polling parties are returning)

    540 downloads

    Updated

  2. Schedule for bye-elections to fill casual vacancies from 89 - Agra and 23-Darjeeling Assembly Constituencies in the State Legislative Assemblies of Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal respectively

    ELECTION COMMISSION OF INDIA
                        Nirvachan Sadan, Ashoka Road, New Delhi-110001
    No. ECI/PN /50/2019                                                                   Dated:  19th April, 2019
     
    PRESS NOTE
    Subject :                 Schedule for bye-elections to fill casual vacancies from 89 - Agra and 23-Darjeeling Assembly Constituencies in the State Legislative Assemblies of Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal respectively – Regarding.                 
                There are two clear vacancies from 89–Agra and 23–Darjeeling Assembly Constituencies in the State Legislative Assemblies of Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal, respectively, which needs to be filled up. 
                After taking into consideration various factors like, festivals, electoral rolls, etc., the Commission has decided to hold the bye-election to fill this vacancy as per the programme mentioned as under: -
    Sl No.
    Poll Events
    Schedule
    1
    Date of Issue of Gazette Notification
    22.04.2019 (Monday)
    2
    Last date of making Nominations
    29.04.2019 (Monday)
    3
    Date of Scrutiny of Nominations
    30.04.2019 (Tuesday)
    4
    Last date for withdrawal of Candidatures
    02.05.2019 (Thursday)
    5
    Date of Poll
    19.05.2019 (Sunday)
    6
    Counting of Votes
    23.05.2019 (Thursday)
    7
    Date before which election shall  be completed
    27.05.2019 (Monday)
     
    ELECTORAL ROLL
                The Electoral Rolls for the aforesaid Assembly Constituency w.r.t. 01.01.2019 as the qualifying date has been finally published.
     
    ELECTRONIC VOTING MACHINES (EVMs) and VVPATs
                            The Commission has decided to use EVMs and VVPATs in the bye-election in all the polling stations. Adequate numbers of EVMs and VVPATs have been made available and all steps have been taken to ensure that the polls are conducted smoothly with the help of these machines.
    IDENTIFICATION OF VOTERS
                            In consonance with the past practice, the Commission has decided that the voter’s identification shall be mandatory in the aforementioned bye- election at the time of poll. Electoral Photo Identity Cards (EPIC) shall be the main document of identification of a voter. The order issued by the Commission in this regard for the General Election to the House of People and State Legislative Assembly, 2019 shall apply for identification of voters at the time of poll in the said bye-election.
    MODEL CODE OF CONDUCT
                            The Model Code of Conduct has already come into force with announcement of General Election to Lok Sabha, 2019 on 10th March, 2019 in all States/UTs. The Model Code of Conduct shall be applicable to all candidates, political parties and the State Government concerned. The Model Code of Conduct shall also be applicable to the Union Government for the district of the State concerned.

    158 downloads

    Updated

  3. Final Voter turnout of Phase 1 to Phase 5 of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019

    The final Voter turnout of Phase 1 and Phase 2. The document contains
    1. Final Voter turnout Phase 1 (Updated)
    2. Final Voter Turnout- Comparison Phase 1 (PC wise) (Updated)
    3. Final Voter Turnout Phase 2 (Updated)
    4. Final Voter Turnout Comparison Phase 2 (PC wise) (Updated)
    5. Final Voter Turnout Phase 3
    6. Final Voter Turnout Comparison Phase 3 (PC wise) 
    7. Final Voter Turnout Phase 4  (Updated)
    8. Final Voter Turnout Comparison Phase 4 (PC wise)  (Updated) 
    9. Final Voter Turnout Phase 5
    10. Final Voter Turnout Comparison Phase 5 (PC wise) 

     
     
    (Updated Turnout - including all the data of Agra AC 87,88 and 89)

    19,075 downloads

    Updated

  4. Schedule for bye-election to fill Casual vacancies in the State Legislative Assembly of West Bengal-reg.

    Schedule for bye-election to fill Casual vacancies in the State Legislative Assembly of West Bengal-reg.
     

    685 downloads

    Updated

  5. General Election to Lok Sabha 2019 and State Legislative Assemblies 2019 - Allotment of Broadcast/Telecast time to Recognized National/State Political Parties -regarding.

    General Election to Lok Sabha 2019 and State Legislative Assemblies 2019 - Allotment of Broadcast/Telecast time to Recognized National/State Political Parties -regarding.

    2,246 downloads

    Updated

  6. General election to 17th Lok Sabha, 2019 and State Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim 2019 - Media Coverage during the period referred to in Section 126 of RP Act, 1951.

    No. ECI/PN/ 36/2019            Date:   23rd March, 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    Sub: General election to 17th Lok Sabha, 2019 and State Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim 2019 - Media Coverage during the period referred to in Section 126 of RP Act, 1951.
    The Schedule for holding general election to the 17th Lok Sabha 2019 and Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim 2019 has been announced on 10th March, 2019.  Poll is scheduled to be held in multiple phases. Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, prohibits displaying any election matter by means, inter alia, of television or similar apparatus, during the period of 48 hours before the hour fixed for conclusion of poll in a constituency. The relevant portions of the said Section 126 are re-produced below:
    (126. Prohibition of public meeting during period of forty-eight hours ending with hour fixed for conclusion ofpoll-
    (1) No person shall-
    (a).....................
    (b) Display to the public any election matter by means of cinematograph, television or other similar apparatus;
    (c)........................
    In any polling area during the period of forty-eight hours ending with the hour fixed for the conclusion of the poll for any election in the polling area.
    (2) Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.
    (3) In this Section, the expression “election mater” means any.matter intended or calculated to influence or affect the result of an election)
    2. During elections, there are sometimes allegations of violation of the provisions of the above Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 by TV channels in the telecast of their panel discussions/debates and other news and current affairs programmes. The Commission has clarified in the past that the said Section 126 prohibits displaying any election matter by means, inter alia, of television or similar apparatus, during the period of 48 hours ending with the hour fixed for conclusion of poll in a constituency. "Election matter" has been defined in that Section as any matter intended or calculated to influence or affect the result of an election. Violation of the aforesaid provisions of Section 126 is punishable with imprisonment upto a period of two years, or with fine or both.
    3. The Commission once again reiterates that the TV/Radio channels and cable networks/internet website/social media platforms should ensure that the contents of the programmes telecast/broadcast/ displayed by them during the period of 48 hours referred to in Section 126 do not contain any material, including views/appeals by panelists/participants that may be construed as promoting/ prejudicing the prospect of any particular party or candidate(s) or influencing/ affecting the result of the election. This shall, among other things include display of any opinion poll and of standard debates, analysis, visuals and sound-bytes.
    4. In this connection, attention is also invited to Section 126A of the R.P. Act 1951, which prohibits conduct of Exit poll and dissemination of its results during the period mentioned therein, i.e. the hour fixed for commencement of poll in the first phase and half an hour after the time fixed for close of poll for the last phase in all the States.
    5. During the period not covered by Section 126, concerned TV/Radio/Cable/FM channels/internet websites/Social Media platforms are free to approach the state/ district/ local authorities for necessary permission for conducting any broadcast/Telecast related events (other than exit polls) which must also conform to the provisions of the model code of conduct, the programme code laid down by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting under the Cable Network  (Regulation)  Act  with  regard to decency,  maintenance  of communal  harmony,  etc.  All Internet websites and Social Media platforms must also comply with the provisions of The Information      Technology      Act,      2000     and      ECI     guidelines No-491/SM/2013/Communication, dt 25thOctober,2013, for all political content on their platform. As regards political advertisement, the same needs pre-certification by the Committees set up at State/District level as per the Commission's order  No. 509/75/2004/JS-I, dt 15th April,2004.
    6. Attention of all print media is also drawn to the following guidelines issued    by Press Council of India to follow for observance during the election:
    i. It will be the duty of the Press to give objective reports about elections and the candidates.  The newspapers are not expected to indulge in unhealthy election campaigns, exaggerated reports about any candidate/party or incident during the elections.  In practice, two or three closely contesting candidates attract all the media attention. While reporting on the actual campaign, a newspaper may not leave out any important point raised by a candidate and make an attack on his or her opponent. ii. Election campaign along communal or caste lines is banned under the election rules. Hence, the Press should eschew reports, which tend to promote feelings of enmity or hatred between people on the ground of religion, race, caste, community orlanguage. iii. The Press should refrain from publishing false or critical statements in regard to the personal character and conduct of any candidate or in relation to the candidature or withdrawal of any candidate or his candidature, to prejudice the prospects of that candidate in the elections. The Press shall not publish unverified allegations against any candidate/party. iv. The Press shall not accept any kind of inducement, financial or otherwise, to project a candidate/party. It shall not accept hospitality or other facilities offered to them by or on behalf of any candidate/party.
    v. The Press is not expected to indulge in canvassing of a particular candidate/party. If it does, it shall allow the right of reply to the other candidate/party.
    vi. The Press shall not accept/publish any advertisement at the cost of public exchequer regarding achievements of a party/ governmentin power.
    vii. The Press shall observe all the directions/ orders/instructions of the Election Commission/Returning Officers or Chief Electoral Officer issued from time to time.
     
    7. Attention of the electronic media is invited to the "Guidelines for Election Broadcasts" issued by NBSA dt 3rd March, 2014.
    i. News broadcasters should endeavour to inform the public in an objective manner, about relevant electoral matters, political parties, candidates, campaign issues and voting processes as per rules and regulations laid down under The Representation of the People Act 1951 and by the Election Commission of India. ii. News channels shall disclose any political affiliations, either towards a party or candidate. Unless they publicly endorse or support a particular party or candidate, news broadcasters have a duty to be balanced and impartial, especially in their election reporting.
    iii. News broadcasters must endeavour to avoid all forms of rumor, baseless speculation and disinformation, particularly when these concern specific political parties or candidates. Any candidate/political party, which has been defamed or is a victim of misrepresentation, misinformation or other similar injury by broadcast of information should be afforded prompt correction, and where appropriate granted an opportunity of reply.
    iv. News broadcasters must resist all political and financial pressures which may affect coverage of elections and election related matters.
    v. News broadcasters should maintain a clear distinction between editorial and expert opinion carried on their news channels.
    vi. News broadcasters that use video feed from political parties should disclose it and appropriately tagged.
    vii. Special care must be taken to ensure that every element of news/ programmes dealing with elections and election related matters is accurate on all facts relating to events, dates, places and quotes. If by mistake or inadvertence any inaccurate information is broadcast, the broadcaster must correct it as soon as it comes to the broadcaster's notice with the same prominence as was given to the original broadcast.
    viii. News broadcasters, their journalists and officials must not accept any money, or valuable gifts, or any favour that could influence or appear to influence, create a conflict of interest or damage the credibility of the broadcaster or their personnel.
    ix. News broadcasters must  not  broadcast  any  form  of  'hate  speech' or other obnoxious content  that may lead  to incitement  of violence or promote public unrest or disorder as election campaigning based  on communal or caste factors is prohibited under Election Rules. News broadcasters should strictly avoid reports which tend to promote feelings of enmity or hatred among people, on the ground of religion, race, caste, community, region or language.
    x. News broadcasters are required to scrupulously maintain a distinction between news and paid content.  All paid content should be clearly marked as "Paid Advertisement" or "Paid Content”: and paid content must be carried in compliance with the "Norms & Guidelines on Paid News" dated 24.11.2011 issued by NBA.
    xi Special care must be taken to report opinion polls accurately and fairly, by disclosing to viewers as to who commissioned, conducted and paid for the conduct of the opinion polls and the broadcast. If a news broadcaster carries the results of an opinion poll or other election projection, it must also explain the context, and the  scope and limits of such polls with their limitations. Broadcast of opinion polls should be accompanied by information to assist viewers to understand the poll's significance, such as  the methodology used, the sample size, the margin of error, the fieldwork dates, and data used. Broadcasters should also disclose how vote shares  are converted to seat shares.
    xii. The broadcasters shall not broadcast any "election matter" i.e. any matter intended or calculated to influence or affect the result of an election, during the 48 hours ending with the hours fixed for the conclusion of poll in  violation of Section 126(1)(b) of  the Representation of the People Act1951.
    xiii. The Election Commission of India (ECI) will monitor the broadcasts made by news broadcasters from the time elections are announced until the conclusion and announcement of election results. Any violation by member broadcasters reported to the News Broadcasting Standards Authority (NBSA) by the Election Commission will be dealt with by the NBSA under its regulations.
    xiv. Broadcasters should, to the extent possible, carry voter education programmes to effectively inform voters about the voting process,  the importance of voting, including how, when and where to vote, to register to vote and the secrecy of theballot.
    xv. News broadcasters must not air any final, formal and definite results until such results are formally announced by the Election Commission of India, unless such results are carried with clear disclaimer that they are unofficial or incomplete or partial results or projections which should not be taken as final results.
     
    8. Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) has also developed a “Voluntary Code of Ethics” for all the participating social media platforms to ensure free, fair & ethical usage of their platforms to maintain integrity of electoral process during the general elections to the Lok Sabha 2019 and Legislative Assemblies of four states and the bye-elections being held simultaneously. Attention of all concerned Social Media platforms is invited to the following text of “Voluntary Code of Ethics” dt 20th March, 2019:   
    i. Participants will endeavour to, where appropriate and keeping in mind the principle of freedom of expression, deploy appropriate policies and processes to facilitate access to information regarding electoral matters on their products and/ or services.
    ii. Participants will endeavour to voluntarily undertake information, education and communication campaigns to build awareness including electoral laws and other related instructions. Participants will also endeavour to impart training to the nodal officer at ECI on their products/ services, including mechanism for sending requests as per procedure established by law.
    iii. Participants and the Election Commission of India (ECI) have developed a notification mechanism by which the ECI can notify the relevant platforms of potential violations of Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and other applicable electoral laws in accordance with procedures established by law. These valid legal orders will be acknowledged and/ or processed within 3 hours for violations reported under Section 126 as per the Sinha Committee recommendations. All other valid legal requests will be acted upon expeditiously by the Participants, based on the nature of reported violation.
    iv. Participants are creating/opening a high priority dedicated reporting mechanism for the ECI and appoint dedicated person(s) / teams during the period of General Elections to interface with and to exchange feedback as may assist with taking expeditious action upon receipt of such a lawful request, following due legal process, from the ECI.
    v. Participants will provide a mechanism for relevant political advertisers, in accordance with their obligations under law, to submit pre-certificates issued by ECI and/ or Media Certification & Monitoring Committee (MCMC) of the ECI in relation to election advertisements that feature names of political parties, candidates for the 2019 General Elections. Further, Participants shall expeditiously process/action paid political advertisements lawfully notified to Participants by the ECI that do not feature such certification.
    vi. Participants will commit to facilitating transparency in paid political advertisements, including utilising their pre-existing labels/ disclosure technology for such advertisements.
    vii. Participants will, pursuant to a valid request received from the ECI, via Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) provide an update on the measures taken by them to prevent abuse of their respective platforms.
    viii. IAMAI will coordinate with the Participants on the steps carried out under this Code and IAMAI as well as Participants will be in constant communication with the ECI during the election period.
    The above guidelines should be duly observed for compliance by all the concerned media.

    1,619 downloads

    Updated

  7. PGIMER New Academic Session inaugurated by the Chief Election Commissioner of India

    No.ECI/PN/1/2019 
    Dated: 7th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: PGIMER New Academic Session inaugurated by the Chief Election Commissioner of India
          The Chief Election Commissioner of India, Shri Sunil Arora today inaugurated the new academic session of Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research (PGIMER) in Chandigarh. While delivering the inaugural address- "The Road Ahead- Opportunities and Challenges'', he said that constant upgradation of oneself in every respect is very essential in any institution to be at par with the ever-changing technological advancements in the world.  January marks the beginning of the new academic session at the Institute which annually trains 400 postgraduate students in different specialties and super specialties in its various 50 departments. Sh. Sunil Arora also congratulated PGI for being ranked No. 2 amongst medical colleges of the country in the NIRF (National Institutional Ranking Framework), 2018. In this competitive world an institution has to constantly upgrade itself to stay abreast of the times, he said.

    Chief Election Commissioner of India, Sh. Sunil Arora addressing at the Inauguration of New Academic Session of the PGIMER
    He further stated that future medicine will possibly treat the human body in more dignified and less invasive manner and expressed belief that PGIMER Chandigarh will play its worthy role in this matter.  
    Shri Arora also urged the medical students to keep their morale up even when challenged. He emphasized that ideas rule the world. Today we are not so much limited by access or resource as much by our own imagination. “Today’s medicine was yesterday’s research; and today’s research will become tomorrow’s medicine. So think out of the box”.
     
    PGIMER felicitates Chief Election Commissioner of India, Shri Sunil Arora
    “The PGIMER already has a glorious history of more than 50 years. The question is where we see it in 10, 20 and 50 years from now. The foresight, resolve and zeal of its present leadership will determine that”, he added.

    72 downloads

    Updated

  8. Chief Election Commissioner of India reviews election preparedness in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh in connection with Lok Sabha Elections- 2019

    No.ECI/PN/2/2019
    Dated: 7th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: Chief Election Commissioner of India reviews election preparedness in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh in connection with Lok Sabha Elections- 2019
    Sh. Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner of India today reviewed the election preparedness of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh in connection with the forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections in 2019.

    The Commission while reviewing the poll preparedness took meeting with the Chief Electoral Officers of Punjab, Haryana and UT of Chandigarh and discussed various issues related to provision of Assured Minimum Facilities (AMFs) at the Polling Stations, strengthening of manpower and infrastructure of CEO’s offices, filling up of all vacant positions of elections functionaries at the field level, availability of EVMs/VVPATs and other election material, adequate budget provisions etc. The Chief Electoral officers of Punjab, Haryana Special Summary Revision (w.r.t 01-01-2019), Voter Helpline (1950) and other IT Applications.  and UT of Chandigarh also briefed the CEC about the progress of 
    This was followed by a comprehensive discussion with the Chief Secretary, DGP, Home Secretary and other senior Officials of Punjab and Haryana, as also with the Advisor to Administrator and other senior officials of Union Territory of Chandigarh on the various election related arrangements to be in place for the smooth and peaceful conduct of elections in a free, fair, inclusive, participative and credible manner.   
    Sh. Arora emphasized the urgent need to create a comprehensive data base of PwD voters along with their PS-wise mapping to ensure that adequate assistance is provided to all PwD voters on day of Poll, which is very important to realize the Commission’s motto of ‘No Voter to be Left Behind’. The Chief Election Commissioner directed that forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections should be made voter friendly and all necessary facilitations should be provided specially to Persons with Disability, senior citizens and women.
    CEC also stressed on the imperative of imparting robust and comprehensive training to all election related officials, at all levels on the entire spectrum of election related matters including ERO-NET, BLO-NET, revision of Electoral Rolls and implementation of IT applications like Suvidha, Samadhan, Sugam, cVIGIL, and Electronically Transmitted Postal Ballot System (ETPBS).

    The review meeting was also attended by Shri Umesh Sinha, Senior Deputy Election commissioner, Shri Dhirendra Ojha, Director General and Shri Nikhil Kumar, Director.
     

    400 downloads

    Updated

  9. Report of the Committee on Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

    ECI/PN/3/2019  Dated: 10th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: Report of the Committee on Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
    The task of maintaining campaign silence during last 48 hours before the conclusion of polling is becoming increasingly onerous in the light of the increasing influence of digital media. So, apart from the regulation by law and ECI instructions, the resolve, proactive support and sustained effort by all stake holders which include political parties, media, civil society organizations, academia and educational institutions, the youth and citizens at large, will remain necessary to contain the evil impact.
    2. The Committee constituted under the chairmanship of Sr. Deputy Election Commissioner Sh. Umesh Sinha to review and suggest modifications and changes in the provisions of the Section 126 and other sections of the Representation of the People Act 1951, provisions of Model Code of Conduct and any other ECI instruction in this regard has submitted its report today i.e. on 10th January, 2019 to the Commission.

    3. The Committee had the following scope of work:
    (a) Study and examine the present provisions of the Section 126 and other related Sections of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and identify difficulties/critical gaps to regulate the violation of the said provisions of the act, particularly during the prohibitory period of 48 hours before the completion of the poll, mentioned in section 126 and suggest necessary amendment/modification.
    (b) Examine the type, category or growth of communication technology or media platform in the country and difficulties in regulating these media platforms during multiphase election when prohibitory period of 48 hours are in force.
    (c) Impact of new media platforms and social media during the prohibitory period of 48 hours before the close of poll and its implication in view of the provisions of section 126.
    (d) Examine the present provisions of Model Code of Conduct (MCC) related to the above issues and suggest modification in this regard.
    4. The Committee set up by the Commission included the representatives of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, Ministry of Law & Justice, Press Council of India, News Broadcasters Association apart from senior officers of the Commission.
    5. The Committee had detailed consultations with all major stakeholders including various political parties, nominees/ representatives of the Press Council of India (PCI), the News Broadcasters Association (NBA), the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) as well as representatives of several intermediaries and technology companies including Facebook, WhatsApp, YouTube, Twitter, and Google. The Committee also had several rounds of discussions and consultations with the legal and other divisions within the ECI.
    6. The recommendations made by the Committee, when implemented (after adoption by the ECI with necessary modification or additions), will help in minimizing the possible interference of activities which aim at indirectly influencing voters during the valuable silence period of 48 hours provided to them. The recommendations of the Committee will be considered by the Commission in detail for follow up action.

    354 downloads

    Updated

  10. ECI to organize Two-Day Chief Electoral Officers’ Conference to review Poll Preparedness for the Lok Sabha Election 2019

    ECI/PN/4/2019 Dated: 10th January, 2019 
    Press Note
    Subject: ECI to organize Two-Day Chief Electoral Officers’ Conference to review Poll Preparedness for the Lok Sabha Election 2019
    The Election Commission of India is holding a two-day Conference on 11th & 12th January, 2019 of the Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) to review poll preparedness of the forthcoming General Elections to the Lok Sabha, 2019.  During the Conference, the Commission will discuss key issues related to poll preparedness such as Electoral Rolls, ERO Net, Polling Station arrangements, EVM-VVPAT  preparations, Security Management, Accessibility to Persons with Disabilities, Voter Education, use of IT applications, provision for Budget, manpower and other resources and so on.  Apart from reviewing the poll preparedness, the Commission will also discuss the takeaways and learnings from the recent poll gone States of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Telangana.
    During the Conference, these CEOs will make their comprehensive presentations of their poll preparedness on all important parameters.  The Commission desires from the CEOs that elections are made totally voter-friendly and accessible for Persons with Disabilities, Senior Citizens and Gender.  The Commission has already directed the CEOs to build a campaign on various media platforms to register eligible citizens and voters; provide every facility for search of their names through website, SMS gateway and through Voter Facilitation Centre at every ERO level.  The Commission has also directed all States to activate the voter helpline centre 1950 so that the grievances of the voters are promptly redressed. During this Conference, the Commission would review the status of facilitation provided to voters by both online and offline methods.  The Commission has already given a checklist to all CEOs on each important parameter and detailed report has been sought from them on each point of checklist.  The Commission will also review the status of vulnerability mapping, security planning, availability of police forces and their requirement during forthcoming Lok Sabha Election.

    702 downloads

    Updated

  11. Election Commission of India organised a two day conference of Chief Electoral officers to review the poll preparedness.

    ECI/PN/5/2019    Dated: 12th January, 2019
    Press Note
     Subject: Election Commission of India organised a two day conference of Chief Electoral officers to review the poll preparedness.
    A two day conference of the Chief Electoral Officers of all the States and UTs was organized by the Election commission on 11th and 12th of January. A comprehensive review of poll preparedness of the states prior to the General elections 2019 was conducted through these two days.

    The primary focus of the Election commission was on the integrity of the electoral roll, meticulous planning for elections, EVM and VVPAT assessment and training and extensive voter outreach.
    Addressing the CEOs, the Chief Election Commissioner of India Sh. Sunil Arora emphasized the fact that the electoral roll that is currently under the process of revision and finalization will be used in the forthcoming General elections. Hence, this particular revision assumes additional importance and care must be taken to ensure the purity of the Roll. He also said that every effort must be made so that all voters are registered well in time. He reaffirmed the significance of the 1950 Helpline for the voters and its role as the First point of Care for the voter in finding her name in the Role, EPIC status and in connecting to the Election machinery and exercising her democratic right. He directed all the state CEOs to set in place support systems for the 1950 Helpline as early as possible.
    Sh. Arora reiterated the commitment of the Election commission of India to provide assured minimum facilities in all polling stations. He also directed the CEOs to have their Booth level, District level and state level Plans ready and conduct a meticulous assessment of all resources required for the conduct of elections. The States and the UTs must assess their EVM/ VVPAT requirements and also ensure adherence to the timelines specified for completion of their First Level checking. He laid stress upon extensive Hands on experience of the EVM and VVPAT among the voters as well as during the training of polling officials as it helps to minimize the glitches and also boosts confidence among the stakeholders.
    The Election Commissioner Sh. Ashok Lavasa, in his address to the CEOs reiterated the immense significance of the integrity of the electoral roll at this crucial juncture. He said that the entire election machinery must now be geared up in order to deliver yet another flawless election to the country. In order to accomplish this herculean task, a detailed planning process and a leadership role has to be assumed by the CEO at the state and the DEOs in the districts. He suggested to each state to reach out to each and every voter and develop innovative mechanisms to facilitate People with disability. He also emphasized upon coordination with bordering states as well as with other agencies in order to give more teeth to the expenditure Monitoring mechanisms operative in the states.
    Through the two day conference, each and every aspect of conduct of election including availability of sufficient budget, manpower, resources, SVEEP, planning, polling station arrangements and IT applications including Suvidha, Sugam and C-Vigil were discussed in detail and the preparedness of  States/UTs on each of these parameters was assessed.
    The five states which had recently undergone Assembly elections – Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Telangana and Rajasthan gave a presentation on the take aways and the learnings from their experiences. Chhattisgarh had developed an app to track their polling personnel which streamlined the process. Madhya Pradesh developed an app to ensure queue less voting experience for people with disabilities, pregnant women and women with infants. These five states demonstrated how technology can be leveraged to enhance voter experience and also provide crucial data in an instant to the election officers.
    Mizoram highlighted its successful conduct of elections despite initial problems. The Mizoram experience was on of building bridges with the civil society organizations, opening dialogue and also the setting up of polling stations for the Bru community in coordination with the state of Tripura was a notable achievement.
    Both Rajasthan and Telangana cited several instances of innovative sveep campaigns incorporating local cultural practices which led to a good turn out in these states.
    All the other CEOs of states and UTs made comprehensive presentations to the Commission on the key areas of their preparations for the forthcoming Lok Sabha Elections 2019.

    606 downloads

    Updated

  12. Voter Awareness Forums shall be set up in Ministries, Departments and Other Institutions for promoting awareness on electoral process

    ECI/PN/6/2019       Dated: 14th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: Voter Awareness Forums shall be set up in Ministries, Departments and Other Institutions for promoting awareness on electoral process
    Voter Awareness Forums will be set up in Ministries, Government Departments, Non-Government Departments and other Institutions to promote electoral awareness. Election Commission of India will be briefing the Nodal Officers of Ministries, Government of India and a representative from Federations on 16th January 2019 at Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra, New Delhi.
    Similar briefing sessions are being held across the country by the Chief Electoral Officers and District Election Officers on the same day where nodal officers of Departments, Non-Govt Departments, CSOs, Corporate and Media Houses in the State and District are being briefed respectively. 
    Voter Awareness Forums are informal Forums for generating awareness around electoral process through activities like discussions, quizzes, competitions and other engaging activities. All employees of the Organisation are expected to become members of the VAF with the Head of the Organisation acting as Chair of VAF. 
    VAF is part of the Electoral Literacy Club programme of ECI. Launched on the 8th National Voters Day, 25th January 2018, the ELC programme envisages setting up of Electoral Literacy Club in every educational institution and Chunav Pathshala at every booth to cover those outside the formal education system.  Around 2.11 Lakh ELCs have already been established across the country in the first year of the launch of the programme.
     The ELCs and Chunav Pathshala activities are conducted by the Convener using a resource Guide where step by step instructions are given for conducting each activity. Separate Resource books have been developed for Class IX, X, XI and XII. A calendar of activities in a year has also be indicated. Total of 6-8 activities, with specific learning outcome, running into approximately 4 hours in all, have been identified for each class.         

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  13. Election Commission of India launches Voter Awareness Forums(VAFs) across the country

    ECI/PN/7/2019     Dated: 16th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: Election Commission of India launches Voter Awareness Forums(VAFs) across the country
    Voter Awareness Forum(VAF) was launched by Election Commission of India in New Delhi, by the Chief Electoral Officers in the State capital and by District Election Officers in the Districts today. 
    Addressing the Nodal Officers from 44 Ministries, Government of India, and representatives from Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) at Pravasi Bhartiya Kendra, New Delhi today, the Commission exhorted them to immediately set up VAFs and facilitate enrolment of all employees and officials on the electoral roll.
    Chief Election Commissioner Shri Sunil Arora said that the founding fathers of the Constitution had an instinctive faith in the citizenry of country and therefore gifted Universal Adult Franchise to the Indian populace while other democracies took years before extending this right to all its citizens. It is therefore our collective responsibility to value and preserve this right and in this endeavour Voter Awareness Forums have a crucial role to play. He asked the Nodal Officers to commit themselves to the aims of the VAFs which is to promote informed and ethical electoral participation, first step of which is registration.

    Election Commissioner Shri. Ashok Lavasa said thousands of unnamed and faceless Government officials undertake the task of preserving the electoral process, in different capacities and roles. Hailing the Officers as “Ambassadors of Democracy”, Shri Lavasa said that as Nodal Officers, now they are invested with the additional responsibility of educating colleagues and staff in their work place and ensuring that all the members of their Ministry and Departments are familiar with the electoral procedure right from enrolment to the casting of ballot. 
    Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner, briefed all present about the ‘Voter Verification and Information’ drive that the Commission is taking up and asked VAF to facilitate members to check their names and details on Electoral Roll through online NVSP portal of ECI and the Voter Helpline No 1950.
    The half-day briefing was conducted to familarise the Officers from various Ministries and Federations with the concept of Voter Awareness Forum and to brief them about their role as Nodal Officers of the VAFs. Similar briefing sessions are being held across the country by the Chief Electoral Officers and District Election Officers across the country where nodal officers of Departments, Non-Govt Departments, CSOs, Corporate and Media Houses in the State and District were briefed respectively.
    Voter Awareness Forums are informal Forums for generating awareness around electoral process through activities like discussions, quizzes, competitions and other engaging activities. All employees of the Organisation are expected to become members of the VAF with the Head of the Organisation acting as the Chair. 
    VAF is part of the Electoral Literacy Club programme of ECI. Launched on the 8th National Voters Day, 25th January 2018, the ELC programme envisages setting up of Electoral Literacy Club in every educational institution and Chunav Pathshala at every booth to cover those outside the formal education system.  Around 2.11 Lakh ELCs have already been established across the country in the first year of the launch of the programme.
     
     

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  14. Election Commission of India Firmly Stands by fool proof nature of ECI EVMs.

    ECI/PN/8/2019       Dated: 21st  January, 2019
     
    Press Note
    Subject: Election Commission of India Firmly Stands by fool proof nature of ECI EVMs.
    It has come to the notice of Election Commission of India that an event claiming to demonstrate EVMs used by ECI can be tampered with, has been organised in London. 
    Whereas, ECI has been wary of becoming a party to this motivated slugfest, ECI firmly stands by the empirical facts about fool proof nature of ECI EVMs deployed in elections in India. 
    It needs to be reiterated that these EVMs are manufactured in Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL) under very strict supervisory and security conditions and there are rigorous Standard Operating Procedures meticulously observed at all stages under the supervision of a Committee of eminent technical experts constituted way back in 2010.
    It is being separately examined as to what legal action can and should be taken in the matter.
     
     

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  15. ECI organises a Workshop for Radio Jockeys on Voter Awareness.

    ECI/PN/9/2019    Dated: 21st January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: ECI organises a Workshop for Radio Jockeys on Voter Awareness.
    Election Commission of India organized a workshop for Radio Jockeys (RJs) of leading FM channels including All India Radio and various private FM channels. Total 19 Radio jockeys from major FM channels viz. Big FM, Red FM, Fever 104 FM, Radio Nasha, Ishq FM and Radio City attended 2 hours interactive session, where they participated in activities for dissemination of voter education.
    The workshop is a part of the engagement taken up by the commission with the major stakeholders. FM radio is one of the important medium, which connects the voters with the election machinery. The workshop was organized to familiarize the Radio Jockeys with the election process so that they can help in wide and accurate dissemination of information to their listeners.

    The session began with introduction to the workshop by Sh. A. K. Pathak, Secretary, Election Commission of India, thereafter, the participants were provided information on the various initiatives of Voter education taken by the Commission with special focus on  EVM VVPAT awareness and ‘Verify your details on Electoral Roll’ Campaign ahead of Lok Sabha elections 2019.  The participants then built a dummy ballot paper as part of an activity ‘Build Your Ballot’ of Voter Awareness Forum/ Electoral Literacy Clubs.  

    Director, Ms. Padma Angmo interacted with the participants wherein they discussed their queries and assured to take forward the association with ECI on voter awareness in an organic manner. Her interaction was followed by a quiz, which conveyed basic information on voter awareness through interesting questions. The session adjourned with vote of thanks by Sh. Sujeet Kumar Mishra, Under Secretary, Election Commission of India.
                                           

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  16. Election Commission of India reaffirms Non-Tamperability of EVMs

    ECI/PN/10/2019   Dated: 22nd January, 2019                                                                          
    Press Note
    Subject: Election Commission of India reaffirms Non-Tamperability of EVMs
    In the wake of the motivated controversy about ECI EVMs, attempted to be created by one so called ‘cyber expert’ Mr Syed Shuja, the Technical Experts Committee (TEC) members - Prof D T Shahani, Prof Emeritus IIT Delhi and Prof Rajat Moona, Director IIT Bhilai and Prof D K Sharma, Prof Emeritus IIT Bombay (Mumbai), have reconfirmed to the ECI today that :
    The ECI-EVMs are stand-alone machines designed to connect only amongst ECI-EVM units (Ballot Unit, Control Unit and VVPAT) through cables that remain in full public view.There is no mechanism in ECI-EVMs to communicate with any device through wireless communication on any Radio Frequency.All versions of ECI-EVMs are regularly and rigorously tested against low to high wireless frequencies. These tests include and go beyond the standard tests specified for electronic equipments ECI-EVMs are regularly tested for proper functioning under all kind of operating conditions.  ECI-EVMs are also regularly tested for code authentication and verification. In the context of Sh Syed Shuja alleging about the two side printing of VVPAT paper which allegedly retains lower tampered print while the front side print as verified by the voter, getting erased, the TEC clarified that VVPATs use thermal printers which can print only on one side of thermal paper. The print is fully visible through the viewing window. The paper rolls used in VVPATs have only one-sided thermal coating and hence can be printed only on one side. The VVPAT paper print lasts atleast for five years. 
    CMDs of Bharat Electronics Limited and Electronics Corporation of India Limited, who are the sole manufacturers of EVMs and now also VVPATs, also reaffirmed that all the TEC prescribed Standard Operating Procedures are scrupulously adhered to and observed. 
    It is however reiterated that while ECI-EVMs might malfunction sometimes like any other machine due to component failures and stop working, but even such a malfunctioning ECI-EVM would not record any vote incorrectly. It is reaffirmed that ECI-EVMs are not tamperable. 
    ECI has also lodged an FIR u/s 505(1)(b) of IPC against Mr Shuja with DCP, New Delhi district.

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  17. Election Commission of India to host International Conference on ‘Making Our Elections Inclusive and Accessible’

    ECI/PN/11/2018     Dated 23rd January, 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    Sub: Election Commission of India to host International Conference on ‘Making Our Elections Inclusive and Accessible’ 
    In consonance with the 9th National Voters’ Day to be held on 25th January 2019, Election Commission of India (ECI) is going to host an International Conference on ‘Making Our Elections Inclusive and Accessible’ on 24th January 2019. Besides Chief Election Commissioner Sh. Sunil Arora and Election Commissioner Sh. Ashok Lavasa, Heads and dignitaries from six Election Management Bodies (EMBs) viz. Bangladesh, Bhutan, Kazakhstan, Maldives, Russia & Sri Lanka and three International Organisations viz. Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre, U.K and International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) and International Centre for parliamentary Studies (ICPS) will participate in the event. 
    There will be two sessions during the Conference where representatives from the EMBs and International Organisations will participate and share their experiences, best practices and initiatives aimed at electoral engagement, enrolment and active participation in inclusive and accessible voting exercise in various countries. 
    During the Conference another issue of ECI’s quarterly magazine “Voice International” will be released which will carry the theme of “Making polling stations accessible and voter friendly”. On the sidelines of the Conference, ECI will also renew Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for cooperation in the field of election management with the Election Commission of Bhutan.
    The MoUs provide for an institutional framework and aim for promotion of exchanges of knowledge and experience in the field of organizational and technical development, with a view to strengthen the administration of electoral processes; exchange of information, material, expertise and technical know-how relating to electoral processes and systems; training of personnel and organizational development and capacity building.
    Election Commission of India has, so far, signed MOUs with twenty-five Election Management Bodies and International Organizations (viz. Australia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Brazil, Chile, Fiji, Georgia, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Republic of Korea, Kyrgyz Republic, Libya, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Myanmar, Nepal, Russia, South Africa, Suriname, Yemen and United Nations, Intl. IDEA & IFES). 
    The International Conference is being organised with the purpose of sharing the experience of different EMB’s, International Institutions and Experts with regard to analysis of barriers, policy interventions, strategies, programmes, good practices and technological innovation for inclusive and accessible election. The international delegates will also attend the National Voters’ Day Celebrations in New Delhi besides visiting the new campus of the India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM) at Dwarka, New Delhi on 25th January 2019. 

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  18. ELECTION COMMISSION OF INDIA HOSTS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ‘MAKING OUR ELECTIONS INCLUSIVE AND ACCESSIBLE’ AND RENEWS MoU ON ELECTORAL COOPERATION WITH BHUTAN

    ECI/PN/12 /2019         24th January, 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    ELECTION COMMISSION OF INDIA HOSTS
     INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON 
     ‘MAKING OUR ELECTIONS INCLUSIVE AND ACCESSIBLE’   
    AND RENEWS
    MoU ON ELECTORAL COOPERATION WITH  BHUTAN
    The Chief Election Commissioner of India, Shri Sunil Arora and Election Commissioner Shri Ashok Lavasa today inaugurated an International Conference on ‘Making our Elections Inclusive and Accessible’. ECI is hosting the International Conference on the occasion of 9th National Voters Day which is observed on 25th January every year. Chairpersons/Chief Election Commissioners / Commissioner and Senior Officials from Election Management Bodies (EMBs) viz. Bangladesh, Bhutan, Kazakhstan, Maldives,  Russia & Sri Lanka and Heads/Senior Representatives of International Organisations viz. Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre, U.K.; International Centre for Parliamentary Studies, U.K. and International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) have gathered in New Delhi to participate in the event. 

    In his Keynote Address, Sh. Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner of India,  stated that  free, fair, transparent, credible and ethical elections are critical to the legitimacy of a democratic government. It is imperative that the voice of all categories of voters is included in democratic representation. Inclusive elections coupled with characteristics such as transparency, accountability and competitiveness add to the strength of democratic polity.  Speaking specifically of the Indian context, he strongly affirmed that ECI is always open to all kinds of feedback in all forms from all stakeholders particularly the political parties who are the most significant stakeholders after the voters.  He  stated that ECI is not going to be intimidated, coerced or pressurized into going back to ballot papers days. The position has been consistently maintained by successive Commissions and the same will be maintained in the future.   In ballot paper era there used to be innumerable complaints about impersonation and booth capturing by anti-social elements and musclemen etc. besides the inordinate delays in declaring results which sometimes spread from three to four days. We have kept a robust technical and administrative mechanism to safeguard the integrity of EVM. VVPATs have further enhanced the transparency of votes for the voters. 
    In context of the recent aspersions cast on EVMs used in elections, Shri Arora denounced the targeting of the machines, which unnecessarily are being dragged into motivated slugfest. “EVMs have been in use for the last two decades. Even in several elections since 2014, the machines have given different results in different elections.” Shri Arora mentioned that even in the recent elections in the five States, out of a total of 176,000 Polling Booths where EVMs were used, there were six incidents of violation of Standard Operating Procedure, that too in reserved EVMs not used in the actual elections. “Although the ratio is negligible but even in these cases stringent disciplinary action was taken and ECI has and always will have zero tolerance to any kind of errors in the election process” he reiterated. 
    Shri Arora also referred to the relevant UN Treaties viz; Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) 1948 and the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) 1966 etc. which have guided and provided strength and support to democracies across the world  in shaping up their constitutional, legislative, and legal framework for ‘Inclusive and Accessible Elections’.
    While addressing the participants, Election Commissioner, Sh. Ashok Lavasa mentioned that  Election Commission of India has played a pioneering role in organizing free, fair and credible elections in a transparent manner in the largest democracy in the world and leads the way in sharing best practices and knowledge skills with fellow EMBs.  He referred to the active role played by ECI in international arena in the field of Election Management through its close association with regional and world bodies like  FEMBoSA, AAEA, A-WEB and International IDEA. In this regard ECI has provided technical assistance to several countries like Jordan, Maldives, Namibia, Egypt, Bhutan and Nepal; undertaken Study/Observation Missions for Elections to a number of countries abroad and exchange visits for sharing of experiences and skills as also helped with capacity building programmes.
    Sh. Lavasa said “it is a tribute to Indian people, our democracy and the election machinery that what started as a voter base of 176 million people in 1951 is now a vast vocal electorate of almost 880 million with a voting percentage of about 66.4 % in 2014” 
    He noted that the better thing of the course is that the increase is across the spectrum, more women , more first time voters, more PwDs , more transgenders and more service voters.  The next milestone is to improve it further and work towards ethical voting, he emphasised.
    In his welcome address, Mr. Umesh Sinha, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner briefed the delegates about the contours of the International Conference on ‘Making our Elections Inclusive and Accessible’. He mentioned that ECI has led the way in the path to democracy during the last 68 years by conducting 16 General Elections to the Lok Sabha and more than 388 elections to the State Legislative Assemblies. ECI is globally recognised today as an institution of repute in imparting knowledge and sharing of best practices and skills with other EMBs through its robust International Cooperation Programme. He highlighted various initiatives taken by the ECI under its flagship programme Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP) for enhancing Inclusion among various categories of voters to encourage their electoral participation.   He expressed the hope that the ideas and experiences shared at this Conference would provide useful takeaways for all stakeholders in this endeavour.
    During the one-day Conference, there were sessions with Heads and senior delegates from EMBs and International Organisations, giving their presentations and sharing of their experiences, best practices and initiatives aimed at electoral engagement, enrolment and active participation aiming towards inclusive and accessible ballot exercise   in their respective countries.

    On the sidelines of the Conference ECI today also renewed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for cooperation in the field of election management with the Election Commission of Bhutan. To mark the occasion, ECI also released the January 2019 issue of its Quarterly Magazine ‘VOICE International’.  The  magazine carries rich experiences for knowledge sharing on Inclusive and Accessible Elections across the democracies around the world.

    The international delegates have also been invited to attend the National Voters Day Celebrations in New Delhi on 25th January 2019 besides visiting the upcoming campus of the India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM) at Dwarka, New Delhi. Some of the delegates will also witness the celebration of the Republic Day on 26th January 2019.

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  19. 9th National Voters’ Day to be celebrated on 25th January 2019

    ECI/PN/13/2019         Dated: 24th January, 2019
    Press Note
    Subject: 9th National Voters’ Day to be celebrated on 25th January 2019
    The country will celebrate the 9th National Voters' Day on 25th January 2019 at more than 6 lakh locations covering around 10 lakh Polling Stations across the country. New Voters shall be felicitated and handed over their EPIC (Elector Photo Identity Card) in the NVD function. 
    Hon’ble President of India Sh. Ram Nath Kovind will be the Chief Guest at the national function being organized by Election Commission of India at Manekshaw Centre, Delhi Cantt. Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Hon’ble Law Minister shall also grace the national function. In view of the upcoming Lok Sabha Election, ‘No Voter to be Left Behind’ has been selected as the theme for the NVD.
    My Vote Matters, a Quarterly Magazine is being launched on the occasion and the first copy shall be presented by the Commission to the Hon’ble President.
    The National Awards for the Best Electoral Practices shall be conferred to Officers for outstanding performance in the conduct of elections. In addition, awards are also being given to CSOs and Media Houses who have made outstanding contribution in the field of voter awareness and outreach.  
    Chief Election Commissioners and senior officials from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Kazakhstan, Maldives, Russia and Sri Lanka shall grace the occasion. Members of Political Parties, Members of Parliament besides Diplomats from various countries and representatives from national and international organizations working in the area of democracy and elections are also expected to attend the national function. 
    The National Voters’ Day (NVD) is celebrated all over the country on January 25 every year since 2011 to mark the Foundation day of Election Commission of India, which was established on this day in the year 1950. The main purpose of the NVD celebration is to encourage, facilitate and maximize the enrollment, especially for the new voters. Dedicated to the voters of the country, the Day is utilized to spread awareness among voters for promoting informed participation in the electoral process. 

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  20. National Voters’ Day celebrated on 25th January; President of India lauds initiatives being taken up by Election Commission in preparation for the Lok Sabha Elections 2019

    ECI/PN/14/2019        25th January, 2019 
    Press Note
     National Voters’ Day celebrated on 25th January;
    President of India lauds initiatives being taken up by Election Commission in preparation for the Lok Sabha Elections 2019
    The 9th National Voters’ Day (NVD) is celebrated across the country on 25th January 2019. The theme for NVD this year was ‘No Voter to be Left Behind’ reiterating the commitment of Election Commission of India (ECI) in view of the Lok Sabha elections due this year.
     
    Hon’ble President of India Sh. Ram Nath Kovind, while presiding over the National Function organized by ECI at Manekshaw Centre, Delhi hailed various interventions taken up by the Commission for conduct of free, fair and participative elections and particularly appreciated the initiatives for reaching out to voters in the remotest corner to enroll their names in the electoral roll and to encourage them to exercise the Right to Vote. Referring to his recent visit to Gir National Forest in Gujarat where he came to know about set up of a polling station in the remote location that too for a single voter, Shri Kovind lauded the efforts of ECI to make every vote count in consonance with the theme of the year.
    He said that the framers of our Constitution set up the Election Commission as an independent and constitutional body one day before the birth of the Republic of India. This reflects an immense regard and deep-rooted belief in democracy and the democratic spirit. Talking about the electoral process – beginning with the preparation of electoral rolls and concluding with the declaration of election results – he said it is difficult for an ordinary person to comprehend the complexity of the entire process. The President said that through all this, the credibility of Indian electoral system has continuously strengthened and Indian voters have a firm belief in the integrity, diligence, fairness and transparency of the election mechanism of the country.
     
    Applauding winners of the National Awards the President asked them to keep contributing to conduct of free and fair elections. Congratulating the new voters who were handed over the EPIC on this occasion, he asked them to take informed decision while casting their vote and said that their decision will define the future of the country. He said, Voters and Election Commission are most crucial to democracy and they compliment each other and also appreciated various initiatives taken by the Commission under the SVEEP programme particularly mentioning the Electoral Literacy Club (ELC) Programme and the All Women Managed Polling Station initiative.
    On receiving the inaugural issue of the new magazine of ECI he said that the magazine is most appropriately titled “My Vote Matters” and Every Vote counts equally in the formation of a government.
    Speaking on the same occasion, Sh Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister, Law & Justice complimented ECI for the stellar role played by it for strengthening the Indian democracy. He lauded the courage, commitment and foresight shown by successive Commissions for conduct of free & fair elections and said that all should trust and believe the sanctity of the election process. Appreciating various initiatives of ECI for voter education and outreach he said voter education is integral to a good democracy.
    Earlier while addressing the audience, Shri Sunil Arora, Chief Election Commissioner reiterated Commission’s commitment to make elections more and more inclusive, voter friendly, transparent and festive and shared the new initiatives being taken up for efficient and effective connect with the voters and for strengthening the elector confidence.
    He briefed the audience about the cVIGIL initiative that provides time stamping proof of model code of conduct and expenditure violation by empowering every citizen to click a photo or video using Smartphone.
    In his welcome address, Shri Ashok Lavas, Election Commissioner briefed the audience about the significance of the day, saying that on this day we celebrate liberty and maturing of young minds into responsible citizens and thanked all stakeholders including voluntary organisations for their support.
    The First Issue of ECI’s quarterly bi-lingual magazine ‘My Vote Matters’ was presented by the Commission to the Hon’ble President of India. The new magazine hosts interesting and informative articles on many core subjects, new initiatives and topics of concurrent interest in elections, electoral processes and practices with the objective of developing a larger connect and interface with all the Stakeholders.
     As part of the regular NVD activity of felicitating the newly eligible voter, 6 young voters from Delhi were handed over their EPIC by the Hon’ble President.
    The National Awards for the Best Electoral Practices were conferred to Officers for outstanding performance in the conduct of elections. Special Awards were given to Departments and Officers from various departments for their contribution in smooth conduct of elections the general election to the Assemblies of 9 states in 2018. In addition, Awards were also given to CSOs and Media Houses who have made outstanding contribution in the field of voter awareness and outreach in these elections.  (Brochure attached)
    Chief Election Commissioners and senior officials from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Kazakhstan, Maldives, Russia and Sri Lanka and Heads/Senior Representatives of International Organisations viz. Malaysian Commonwealth Studies Centre, U.K.; International Centre for Parliamentary Studies, U.K. and International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) graced the occasion and also visited the new campus of the India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM) at Dwarka, New Delhi. Members of Political Parties, Members of Parliament besides Diplomats from various countries and representatives from national and international organizations working in the area of democracy and elections attended the National Voters’ Day function.  
    The National Voters’ Day (NVD) is celebrated all over the country on January 25 every year since 2011 to mark the Foundation day of Election Commission of India, which was established on this day in the year 1950. The main purpose of the NVD celebration is to encourage, facilitate and maximize the enrollment, especially for the new voters. Dedicated to the voters of the country, the Day is utilized to spread awareness among voters for promoting informed participation in the electoral process.

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  21. SCHEDULE FOR GENERAL ELECTIONS, 2019-CORRIGENDUM

    SCHEDULE FOR GENERAL ELECTIONS, 2019-CORRIGENDUM 

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  22. GENERAL ELECTIONS TO THE LOK SABHA, 2019 - PROGRESSIVE SEIZURE

    No. ECI/PN/38/2019 Dated: 26th March, 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    GENERAL ELECTIONS TO THE LOK SABHA, 2019 - PROGRESSIVE SEIZURE
    A total seizure of nearly Rs 540 crores has been made by various enforcement agencies across the country as on March 25, 2019. A break up of seizure of cash, liquor, drugs/narcotics, precious metals & freebies is given below.
    Summary:
    Total Cash Seizure : Rs. 143.47 Cr.
    Total Liquor Seizure : Worth Rs. 89.64 Cr.
    Total Drugs/Narcotics seizure : Worth Rs. 131.75 Cr.
    Total Precious Metals (Gold etc.) seizure : Worth Rs. 162.93 Cr
    Total Freebies/other items seizure : Worth Rs. 12.202 Cr.
    Download the file to view details

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  23. ECI conducts briefing sessions for 2nd batch of General, Police and Expenditure Observers for the Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assembly Elections - 2019

    No. ECI/PN/39/2019    Dated: 26th March, 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    ECI conducts briefing sessions for 2nd batch of General, Police and Expenditure Observers for the Lok Sabha and State Legislative 
    Assembly Elections - 2019 
    In continuation of the briefing held for the first batch of General, Police and Expenditure Observers held on 14th March, the Commission today conducted day long sessions for over a thousand more officers drawn from IAS, IPS, Indian Revenue Service and few other Central Services. These officers are being deployed as Observers in the ongoing Elections to the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies of four States. 

    Addressing the participants, Chief Election Commissioner Shri Arora said that while all Observers are essentially the eyes and ears of the Commission, Senior Expenditure Observers are assuming an enormous role given the quantum of money power vitiating the election process. He added that the Commission has already appointed two Special Expenditure Observers for the States of Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka.  To further identify the role of  illegitimate resources in the elections, the Commission is considering appointing few more Special Expenditure Observers in more Expenditure Sensitive States. Shri Arora reminded the Observers of their enormous responsibility to ensure fair, ethical and transparent election process in the field. He asked them to be vigilant, impartial and accessible to all stakeholders to reinforce the faith in the minds of the citizen towards the electoral process. While elucidating the myriad responsibilities of  Observers, the CEC mentioned that Electoral Rolls are the bed rock of election process and Observers need to ensure the integrity of the Electoral Rolls.

    Reminding the Observers of their crucial role , Shri Arora said that The Commission reposes complete trust in the senior officers being deputed to the field and would like the Observers & CEOs to be the first and last point of contact. However, he also cautioned them that even a trace of proven malafide or partisanship, would lead to ruthless action from the Commission. He further added that, keeping pace with the changing times, the Commission has been proactive in making the electoral process participative by involving & empowering citizens particularly through cVigil App. He said that the cVigil App initiative which started as a pilot project in the Karnataka State elections and then implemented in the five State elections held last year, has now been extended pan India for the ongoing General Elections. 
    Shri Ashok Lavasa, Election Commissioner in his address stated that the Observers have been a critical part of the election process and machinery. He advised Observers to be alert, accessible and responsive and effective in the field to ensure fairness and transparency of the election process. He urged the Observers to be familiar with all the instructions & guidelines to ensure clarity in execution in the field. He said the senior Observers need to play dual roles of monitoring and mentoring. While addressing the Expenditure Observers, Shri Lavasa stressed that only the seizure figures may not be taken as a measure of the efficacy of enforcement machinery, but the money trail and actual perpetrators behind the consignment should be investigated. 
    Welcoming the participants, Election Commissioner Shri Sushil Chandra noted that Observers play an important role for the Election Commission for robust monitoring of the complete process in the field. He asked the Observers to ensure better co-ordination amongst all the Stakeholders in the field. Elaborating the diverse challenges for the Observers in the current scenario, he urged them to be vigilant and accessible. He mentioned that developing real time intelligence and monitoring of accounts of the candidates would be crucial to downplay the role of illegitimate resources adversely influencing the election process. Comprehensive Expenditure Monitoring Handbook, Observers Manual and National Election Planner were provided to the Observers to facilitate their work. 
    During the day long sessions, detailed thematic presentations were made on Election planning, Observer’s roles and responsibilities, electoral roll issues, enforcement of Model Code of Conduct, legal provisions, EVM/VVPAT management, media engagement and the wide array of activities undertaken for voter facilitation under the Commission’s flagship SVEEP (Systematic Voter’s Education and Electoral Participation) programme to apprise the Observers. The Observers were also acquainted with the various IT initiatives and mobile applications launched by the Commission for voter facilitation as well as effective and efficient management of election process in the field. Detailed presentations were made about ‘Observer App’, cVIGIL App and other initiatives

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  24. ECI appoints Special Expenditure Observers for States of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Nagaland and Telangana 

    No. ECI/PN/40/2019     Dated : 26th March 2019
    PRESS NOTE
    ECI appoints Special Expenditure Observers for States of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Nagaland and Telangana 
    Election Commission of India has appointed two eminent former Civil Servants Sh. Gopal Mukherjee and Sh. D.D. Goel as Special Expenditure Observers for the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections. While Sh. Gopal Mukherjee ex-IRS (1980), former Member of CBDT has been deployed in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and Sh.D.D.Goel ex-IRS (1982), former DGIT(Inv.) been deployed in Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland.  Both these officers have extensive knowledge of search and seizure operations conducted by the I.T Department.
    The Special Observers will be supervising and monitoring the work being done by the electoral machinery and ensure that stringent and effective enforcement action is undertaken based on intelligence inputs and complaints received through C-VIGIL and Voter Helpline 1950 against all persons/entities  trying to induce voters by distributing cash, liquor & freebies etc.  in order to vitiate the poll process.
    Further, the Commission has decided to give additional charge of Gujarat and Karnataka to Sh. Shailendra Handa and Ms. Madhu Mahajan, respectively. It may be recalled that Commission had appointed these officers as Special Expenditure Observers on 19th March 2019. Sh Handa would thus be Special Expenditure Observer for Maharashtra and Gujarat while Ms Mahajan will be deployed in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
     

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  25. General Election to the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha & Sikkim 2019 and bye elections to 37 Assembly Constituencies of 12 States to be held simultaneously – Ban on Exit Poll.

    No. ECI/PN/45/2019                                                            Dated: 08th April, 2019
    Press Note
    General Election to the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha & Sikkim 2019 and bye elections to 37 Assembly Constituencies of 12 States to be held simultaneously – Ban on Exit Poll.
    Election Commission of India, in exercise of the powers under sub-section(1) of Section 126A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 has notified the period between 7.00 A.M. on 11.04.2019 (Thursday) and 6.30 P.M. on 19.05.2019 (Sunday) as the period during which conducting any exit poll and publishing or publicizing  the result of exit poll by means of the print or electronic media or in any other manner shall be prohibited during the ongoing General election to the  Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha & Sikkim 2019 and bye elections from assembly constituencies.
    Further, under Section 126(1) (b) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, displaying any election matter including results of any opinion poll or any other poll survey, in any electronic media, would be prohibited during the period of 48 hours ending with the hour fixed for conclusion of poll in each of the phases in the respective polling area during the aforesaid elections.
    Notification dated 7th April, 2019 issued in this regard is enclosed herewith for the information of all concerned.
     

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ECI Main websiteThe Election Commission of India is an autonomous constitutional authority responsible for administering election processes in India. The body administers elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, State Legislative Assemblies in India, and the offices of the President and Vice President in the country. The Election Commission operates under the authority of Constitution per Article 324, and subsequently enacted Representation of the People Act. 

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