Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Voting dates, new rules and more about the polls
New Delhi : The Election Commission has announced polling dates for the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections 2019. With that, the election body also announced many firsts that will make the election more convenient and unbiased. Among the new firsts are candidate photos on EVMs, the introduction of VVPATs, GPS tracking of voting machines.
As per government data, there will be 84.3 million more voters as compared to the 2014 elections; they will be exercising their franchise in 10 lakh polling stations across the length and breadth of the country.
Candidate photo on EVMs: First time ever, the EVM machine will be carrying a photo of the candidate with their party symbol to help the voter in knowing exactly to whom he/she is voting.
Candidates contesting the elections will not only have to declare their income-tax returns of the last five years, offshore assets and PAN details, but will have to submit those of their spouses and family members.
As per a new notification, they will also have to submit details about assets and liabilities abroad.
The EC has announced a list of 11 documents which can be used as a photo identity while exercising the vote. The list of documents includes passport, driving licence, service identity cards issued by the government, passbook with photograph, PAN card, smart card issued by Registrar General of India, MNREGA job card, health insurance smart card, pension document, identity cards issued to elected representatives and Aadhaar card.
The poll body is introducing VVPATs — voter-verifiable paper audit trail — for verification of voting in all polling booths in the country. While VVPATs have been used in Assembly elections and bypolls, this will be the first time they are used in the general elections.
In a first, the poll panel has also decided to fix GPS tracker on the EVM machines; the move comes after reports of mishandling the EVM machines during the recent elections.
The ceiling on election expenditure by a candidate has been fixed at Rs 70 lakh, except for three states, Arunachal Pradesh, Goa and Sikkim, where it is Rs 54 lakh.