‘User acceptance test’ of vote verification machines begins
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‘User acceptance test’ of vote verification machines begins

February 17, 2023

Mysuru DC Dr. K.V. Rajendra inspects EVM Warehouse and VVPAT Machines

Mysore/Mysuru: A team of 55 engineers from the Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL), Hyderabad, is set to begin the process of checking each of the 4,274 VVPAT (Voter Verified Paper Audit Trails) systems that have been stored at EVM warehouse near the new Deputy Commissioner’s Office on Bannur Road.

The process is called FLC (First Level Check) and it is an important process in the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) during elections. This morning, the process of ‘user acceptance test’ began at the EVM warehouse under the supervision of Mysuru District EVM and VVPAT Nodal Officer G.T. Dinesh Kumar, who is also the Commissioner of MUDA.

Dinesh Kumar told Star of Mysore that over 60 staff are checking the ‘user acceptance test’ of the control unit, ballot unit and the VVPAT systems. “The process began at 9 am and will conclude at 4 pm. The entire proceeding is being videographed and held under tight security. No one is authorised to take mobile phones inside and we have elaborate security arrangements,” he added.

After the user acceptance is checked, the 55 engineers from ECIL will begin the FLC. On Feb, 15, the process of recording each VVPAT system through a barcode was completed by a team of over 100 officers drawn from various Departments. In this process, those systems that have been found with snags and glitches have been kept separately to be sent back to the ECIL.

During the FLC, trained engineers and technicians test and verify the functionality of each VVPAT machine to make sure it is functioning properly and accurately recording votes. They also ensure that the VVPAT machines are free from any kind of malfunctions, errors, or tampering.

Last evening, Mysuru Deputy Commissioner Dr. K.V. Rajendra inspected the EVM Warehouse and the VVPAT machines along with representatives from various political parties. Additional Deputy Commissioner Kavitha Rajaram and Election Tahsildar Ram Prasad were present.

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During an election, when a voter casts his vote using an EVM, a VVPAT machine attached to the EVM prints a paper slip that displays the name and symbol of the candidate for whom the vote was cast. The voter can see this paper slip for a few seconds and then it is automatically dropped into a sealed box.

This allows the voter to verify that their vote has been correctly recorded and also provides a physical record of the vote for later use in case of any dispute.

The FLC is an important step in ensuring the transparency and fairness of the election process. As per the Election Commission, the FLC has to be carried out under continuous videography/CCTV coverage.  Any malfunctioning systems will be sent to the ECIL so that the same will not be used in the election.

The ECIL must certify at the time of checking that all components in the systems are original. After this, the plastic cabinets of the machines are sealed and stored in strong rooms.

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