What is Electronic Voting Machine?

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What is EVM?

  • EVM or Electronic Voting Machines are used to cast vote without revealing the identity of the person
  • It is used in Indian General and State Elections.
  • It has replaced paper ballots in local, state and general (parliamentary) elections in India.
  • The two central govt. undertakings i.e. Bharat Electronics Limited and Electronics Corporation of India Limited are the only manufacturers from whom the EVMs are procured by the Election Commission of India.
  • The EVMs run on alkaline batteries and do not depend on electricity.
  • The shelf life of EVMs is around 15 years.

EVM’s equipped with Voter-verified paper audit trail

  • VVPAT device functions like a printer to be attached to the ballot unit.
  • Once the vote is cast it dispenses a paper slip showing the symbol on which it is cast.
  • The voter can only see this slip through a screened window.
  • After seven seconds, the slip automatically gets cut and falls into a sealed drop box.
  • The printout is deposited in a box and can be used to resolve any dispute regarding the election


  • In 1980, M. B. Haneefa invented the first Indian voting machine, gazetted “Electronically operated vote counting machine”
  • The EVMs were commissioned in 1989 by Election Commission of India in collaboration with Electronics Corporation of India Limited.
  • The Industrial designers of the EVMs were faculty members at the Industrial Design Centre, IIT Bombay.
  • The EVMs were first used in 1982 in the by-election to North Paravur Assembly Constituency in Kerala for a limited number of polling stations.
  • EVMs are in being used in part from 1999 and in total from 2004 elections.
  • New generation of EVM was developed in 2011 with a feature for Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT).
  • EC is planning to introduce EVMs equipped with VVPAT machines for the 2019 lok sabha elections.


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