The Supreme Court on Friday sought a detailed response from the Election Commission of India (ECI) to a plea seeking audit of the source code of voter-verified paper audit trails (VVPATs) and electronic voting machines (EVMs).
The plea, filed by a Mumbai-based lawyer Sunil Ahya, sought an independent audit and subsequent locking of source code so that it can’t be tampered with.
After examining the details of a PIL (public interest litigation) filed by Mr Ahya, a bench of Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjiv Khanna asked the ECI to provide a detailed response to the plea.
On November 30 last year, the Supreme Court had rejected Mr Ahya’s plea seeking a software audit report in connection with the proper functioning of EVMs.
During the hearing, the litigant claimed that there was no review of the EVMs and independent software audit, mainly the source code which is the brain behind the machine.
Mr Ahya pleaded to the top court to issue directions to all the respondents to forthwith conduct an independent software audit of various software products, and particularly the source of the EVMs and VVPATs.
The source code of EVMs and VVPATs play a major role in the conduct of elections, Mr Ahya claimed in his petition.