Delhi HC directs EC to consider Aadhaar-based voting system for Elections

Delhi HC directs EC to consider Aadhaar-based voting system for Elections

Aditi Singh

The Delhi High Court today directed the Election Commission of India to consider a representation seeking implementation of an “Aadhaar-based Election Voting System”.

The direction was passed by a Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar in a petition filed by Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay.

In the alternative, Upadhyay had sought a direction to the Election Commission to link the voter identity card of citizens with their Aadhaar.

The petitioner informed the Court that a plea seeking the same relief was earlier preferred before the Supreme Court.

By an order dated March 8 this year, the Supreme Court had directed the Commission to consider the representation made by Upadhyay, it was further stated. After the Commission failed to act on the order, the petitioner was constrained to approach the High Court.

In view of this, the Court ordered,

“…we hereby directed the Election Commission to decide the representation made by the petitioner in accordance with law..(and) policy..if not decided, within a period of eight weeks.”

It was Upadhyay’s submission that an Aadhaar-based voting system or Aadhaar-voter ID linkage would curtail fake, fabricated and duplicate votes, thus ensuring free and fair elections.

As proposed by the petitioner, an e-voting system would use fingerprint and facial biometrics of a person casting a vote.

“…after verification, system shows voter’s information like, Aadhar number, Name, Address and Date of birth, that are already stored in Aadhar’s database and system further asks for voter’s fingerprint. If fingerprint image is matched with template image which is stored in Aadhar’s database then next page shows candidate’s list with party symbol. After selecting a candidate, system asks for vote confirmation. Finally, system shows result “Vote successful”.”

The petitioner stated that an Aadhaar-based system would enable people to vote without going to their constituencies, permit only eligible voters to cast their vote, ensure that eligible voters cast their vote only once, and maintain privacy and authority etc. Consequently, there would be an increase in the voting percentage, Upadhyay claimed.

The petitioner thus claimed that use of Aadhaar details by the Election Commission would not only improve the overall health of electoral rolls, but would also enable the Commission to provide additional services.

With the direction of the Court, the petition stands disposed of.

Upadhyay was represented by Senior Advocate Vikas Singh.

The Delhi High Court earlier issued notice in another petition moved by Upadhyay, seeking a direction to the Central Government and the Delhi Government to provide for linking of movable and immovable property documents with Aadhaar.

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