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OPINION: Aadhar-linked Biometric EVMs needed to save democracy in India

By Danish Ahmad Khan

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is trying to make #Aadhar mandatory in every aspect of lives of common Indians. He has even succeeded in this to a large extent. However, the present NDA government led by Modi has deliberately chosen to turn a blind eye and leave the electoral process completely out of its purview, And, why it shouldn’t after all. If ever the government decides to introduce Aadhar in the electoral system then it will stand exposed.

Whether ballot papers previously or EVMs now, the voting process isn’t foolproof at all, and there are strong possibilities of malpractices, bogus voting and fraud. I happened to discover this during recent municipal corporation elections in Gaya, which is my hometown. EVMs were used for polling and bogus voting was rampant. Some voters were seen using multiple election cards and fake Aadhar cards. I thought had the Election Commission of India introduced Aadhar-linked Biometric EVMs this electoral fraud could have been easily curbed. But, alas there were many corporators who won the municipal elections only because of bogus voting. This macabre scenario also gives credence to the fact #BJP’s massive win in Uttar Pradesh with two-thirds majority must have been through bogus voting. And, this must have been true as well in the given circumstances!!

In my view effective implementation of Aadhar is the only solution to make elections in India transparent, free and fair. Prime Minister Narendra Modi should take the bold step of sweeping electoral reforms by linking Aadhar with EVMs in the first place. By doing so the right person will be able to vote only if his fingerprint matches on the EVM. Through this cheating and bogus voting can be avoided too.

India Elections4The common citizens of India who mostly keep themselves away from either coming out excitedly out of their homes to vote or standing as candidates in elections will get reasons to rejoice and enthusiastically participate in the festival of democracy. The citizens along with their country stand to benefit in many ways, if this finally happens.

Just take a look at the advantages after the implementation of this process. If EVM gets Biometric linked to Aadhar Card it will not only minimise election expenses to minimum but will give opportunity to those talented citizens to contest who are scared of black money powered criminal elements. This will also put an end to multiple Election Cards that a citizen might be holding.

This mechanism will give opportunity to the citizens to elect representatives with clean records to reach Parliament, Assembly to the Sarpanch level to formulate policy without fear or favour thus empowering the citizens and the country.

I myself tried to talk to some political leaders and seek their opinion on this issue, but they talked about other issues instead. And, some of them offered a cryptic reply saying “Do you think it’s possible at all?”. However, President of Hyderabad-based Majlis Bachao Tehreek (MBT) Majidullah Khan Farhat was forthright in his views. He said, “It is common knowledge that candidates and political parties invest crores of rupees to get elected to rig and win elections by wrong means thus defeating the spirt of democracy where in no intellectual, social worker, academician, professional or an honest person with values can’t even dare to think of contesting as black money is hugely involved in elections, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi also claims to be fighting for and putting end to this menace.”

Electoral corruption is the mother of all corruption and root cause of all backwardness in India. Is Prime Minister Narendra Modi ready to do something about the scourge of electoral corruption? Is PM Modi ready to introduce Aadhar-linked Biometric EVMs to curb bogus voting? The anwer is simple: “Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wont”. And, why only PM Modi, even other political parties won’t even like this to happen in foreseeable future. Birds of a feather flock together…!! The future of these corrupt politicians will be at stake. And, the country’s electoral system will see a revolution of sorts if this somehow ever happens.

For now, it’s long haul for hapless citizens. This has to be implemented immediately to stop corruption, nepotism, and save democracy from money power. The citizens after all need to be empowered, and this will come only after a sustained struggle. Forget about the government of the day and political parties, are the citizens ready for this struggle. It is only they who know best. Good luck to World’s Biggest Democracy that India boasts of!

[Danish Ahmad Khan, a native of Gaya, Bihar, is Founder-Editor of India’s First Online Muslim Newspaper “IndianMuslimObserver.com”. He can be reached at [email protected] or contacted at 9990179721]

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