The Election Commission (EC) has finalised the provision to empower the presiding officer or the assistant presiding officer to allow up to 1% voters of a centre to vote in case of fingerprint mismatch, said Election Commissioner Md Alamgir.
The proposal to include the provision to the Representation of the People Order (RPO) will be sent to the law ministry within a couple of days, the election commissioner told reporters Monday (3 October) at his office.
Md Alamgir said those whose fingerprints do not match also have the right to vote.
"If it is more than one percent, the presiding officer will inform the returning officer. In this case, they will inform any voters who are unable to vote," he said.
In response to the question whether the constitutional rights of a voter will be undermined in such a case, he said that it is being done in the larger interest.
"Before this, it was decided to take only ten fingerprints of the voter. In that case the provision for 1% will not be required. Still we are keeping it as a last resort," he added.
According to the EC proposal, If the fingerprints of a voter do not match with biometrics data and the voter cannot cast his vote, the presiding officer or the assistant presiding officer, whoever on duty, shall allow the voter to cast vote by opening the ballot unit by using his [election officials] fingerprints. Such number of voters, who will be allowed to vote shall not exceed 1% of the total number of voters in the said EVM.
"We have already sent the proposal to the Ministry of Law. The ministry will review the matter and take further steps to add it to the RPO," said Election Commissioner Alamgir.