About the Electronic Voting Machines

I think, Facebook has a major influence on my blogging. I was about to sleep tonight after a busy Rakshabandhan day. Suddenly, some messages on FB popped up.

“Indian EVM is not fraud proof”

Googling gave me some serious points. The allegations to this possible fraud can be great!
It may become a point in the Rajyasabha and another day can be wasted (btw, whose money will be wasted eventually?) It may be the headlines tomorrow. Or may be, the last page news.

I saw the video. Some clever people have dismantled a voting machine and changed the display. Now it isn’t just a display but a Bluetooth controllable gadget. Yes, we can increase the count of votes with it.

So the question is, Is it possible? 
Since I have seen the convincing video, I will admit, it may be possible.

I wondered about the day when I voted. The process was short and sweet. After a beep I realised I had just cast my vote to my fav. party. Did my vote acually get counted? Or was the count replaced by such a defective machine, rendering my effort of going to the votebooth, waiting in the queue and spending 45 minutes useless?

At one point I will agree to it. As an active Indian I will conclude this to be the reason if UPA’s victory. I will then share the video on Facebook, Twitter and Digg. I will also show it to my parents and neighbours. I will talk about it to anyone, everywhere- at the park, in the market, in the restrooms. I will read all news about it and make paper cuttings.

But on other point: I strongly oppose this *whatever*.

Reason? Watch the video. The whole machine has to be dismantled in order to hack it. But then someone will have to access it in person! It is only available at the times of polling and counting, otherwise it is in lockup.

Reason #2: Capacity – A common machine stores about 3840 votes. Hacking one machine will give a lead of 3840 votes. The population of my city is about 4,525,013. That means, around 1178 machines have to be used. Imagine what will it take to hack all of them! The goons need to setup a production house!

More reasons will follow. Anyone can point my mistakes, I will be trying to specify the corrections.

Those who have done this research have been arrested. Why?

Give prudent advice; avoid raising unnecessary alarm or giving unwarranted comfort. Take care to be truthful, objective, cautious, and within your competence.

This is taken from ISC2 code of ethics.

An exposure of this magnitude can cause a fall of the government. This will lead to polls (again). And this time people will demand “better” solutions. So obviously there will be increase in election budget. Where will this money come from? Me and you…

The researchers suggested a practice of giving a paper receipt for the e-vote. But that’s why EVMs are here!

They prevent ballot paper expense and make the elections cheap!
They make counting quick and easy!
They prevent bulk bogus voting (stuffing massive bundles of votes in the ballot box)
They are easy to transport and protect!

Every technology has a bug. But it needs to be solved, not exposed on TV.

Here there’s a saying- “If you tell a person his flaws in private, he will try to change. In you speak them out in public, he will try to shut you up.”

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Published on: August 25, 2010

Filed Under: Uncategorized

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