If you didn’t know already, electronic Voting Machines (or EVMs) are the technology that registers our votes. If you are a first-time voter, you might be naturally curious about these machines. Even for an experienced voter, knowing what goes behind the working of an EVM is essential knowledge. Here are a few things you must know about EVMs.
1. An EVM consists of a Control Unit and a Balloting Unit joined together by a cable. The Control Unit belongs to a polling officer while the Balloting Unit is kept in a compartment to cast votes. This basically indicates that unless the polling officer validates your identity, you will not be able to cast a vote .
2. Because of the rampant electricity shortage in the country, EVMs are equipped to run without them. EVMs typically run on 6V alkaline batteries to overcome this problem and ensure voting passes peacefully in electricity-scant areas.
3. If English is your preferred language and you are unaware of your party’s symbol, be ready to spend more time while casting your vote. The names of the candidates are placed alphabetically in the state language. This means that in Maharashtra for example, the candidates’ names will appear in Marathi in alphabetical order.
4. You might find two Ballot Units linked together while casting your vote. This is because a single Ballot Unit can only accommodate 16 candidates. Polling officers can add four Ballot Units to display a maximum of 64 candidates from a single constituency.
5. Since being introduced late last year, NOTA (None of the Above) is also counted as an option among the list of candidates. NOTA allows voters to get their vote registered in favour of no party. NOTA is a counted as a vote since invalid votes are not allowed by EVMs.