Election Commission Holds Workshop On EVM & VVPAT’s “First Level Checking” In Odisha

**Bhubaneswar: ** A day after holding an important meeting with the representatives of various recognized political parties (both regional and national) in connection with the special drive on electoral roll revision from September 1 to October 31, Odisha Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) today (Friday) held another vital meeting with all the Collectors of 30 districts relating to the ‘First Level Checking’ (FLC) of EVMs and VVPATs.

Election Commision of India has deputed two officials to Odisha for imparting training to the Collectors on the process of the FLC that is slated to begin from the first week of September.

Odisha CEO Surendra Kumar informed media, “Today, officials from the Election Commission of India have been deputed here to impart training on the mandatory First Level Checking (FLC) of the electronic voting machines (EVMs) in which all the physical electronic functionings are checked. It is done in the presence of all the political parties and their representatives at the warehouse.”

He also informed, “In our State’s context, the manufacturer is Electronics Corporation of India Limted, Hyderabad. Its technical persons led by their team leader will come over here for the FLC. Our FLC Supervisor is the District Collector who is also the District Election Officer and the FLC is done under the supervision of the Collectors. Today’s training is meant for that.”

He further informed, “FLC will be first held of 10 districts most likely in the first week of September. Rest 20 districts will be by the second week of September. VVPATs are being received by our State in phases.”

In his media reactions, Cuttack Collector Arvind Agrawal said, “Being the DEO (District Election Officer) all requisite knowledge and training ought to be availed regarding the processes of election mechanism. It is because new situations arise and need to be tackled. Hence, we need to assess well in advance for the solutions.”

“Today’s training will obviously be fruitful for all the DEOs so that we can also ensure zero error as well as free and fair elections. EVM management is very important. All necessary steps will be taken so that no issues arise. This training will definitely help,” he averred.

Notably, the Voter-Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) was for the first time used during the Bijepur by-election in Odisha this year while it will be used in all the booths of all the constituencies across Odisha during the 2019 general elections.

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