The Election Commission has introduced biometric voting technology in the ongoing Bihar panchayat elections. On Friday, in the first phase, the voting took place on 4,647 posts in 12 blocks spread over 10 districts — Kaimur, Rohtas, Gaya, Nawada, Aurangabad, Jehanabad, Arwal, Munger, Jamui and Banka — of Bihar amid tight security. According to Election Commission officials, around 14,000 people were deployed at 2,119 polling stations. No major incident of violence was reported from any polling station.
According to the Election Commission, a total of 59.85 per cent of people used their right to vote in the first phase. The commission thanked the women community of the 10 districts for coming out in large numbers and exercising their franchise.
State Panchayat Minister Samrat Chowdhury, while talking to media in Munger, after the first phase of panchayat elections, said that to stop fake voting, a biometric system was introduced by the Election Commission in Bihar.
“There were certain problems in the first phase due to the biometric system being used for the first time in the casting of votes. Hopefully, in the next phases everything will be smooth,” added Chowdhury.
The panchayat minister further said that usage of a biometric system is the best method to stop multiple voting and other malpractices during any elections. “The Election Commission should use the biometric voting system in all future elections,” added the minister.
This was also the first time when electronic voting machines (EVMs) were used in the rural areas during a panchayat election.
The state election commission, early this year, sent a proposal to the Panchayati raj department seeking approval and clearance for the usage of biometric systems during elections. The Broadcast Engineering Consultants India Limited (BECIL), a public sector undertaking, has been roped in to implement the biometric system.