by Special Correspondent,
Dhaka – The election authorities have apparently backtracked from its plan for using electronic voting machine, and now decided to bank on traditional paper ballots in the next general election slated for voting either in later this year or early next year.
The Election Commission headed by Kazi Habibul Awal at a meeting on Monday came up with the decision, Jahangir Alam, a top official at the commission, told reporters.
“The traditional paper ballots and transparent boxes will be used in voting for all 300 parliamentary constituencies,” he said according to the decision.
Earlier, the election commission had plans to conduct the polls using EVM in at least half of the parliamentary constituencies despite the fact that a section in the political camps opposed the idea. But severe fund constraint put its plans on hold.
The EC meeting was joined by election commissioner Ahsan Habib Khan, Rasheda Sultana, Mohammad Alamgir and Md Anisur Rahman.
The commission had initially undertaken a plan to procure EVM at the cost of Tk 8,711 crore for conducting elections in 300 constituencies. But the finance ministry did not respond positively. Moreover, the commission also requested for fund to repair some 150,000 machine at a cost of Tk 1259.9 crore. The fund request did not get any green light.