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19 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Ecnec clears Tk 3,825cr project to buy 1.5 lakh EVMs

UNB

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) yesterday cleared a Tk 3,825.34 crore project to procure 1.5 lakh electronic voting machines (EVMs), reports UNB. The approval came from the weekly Ecnec meeting held at the NEC conference room here with Ecnec Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair. The project titled ‘Procurement, Preservation and Use of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) Aiming at Bringing More Transparency in the Electoral System’ will be implemented by June 2023.

Briefing reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal informed that the Prime Minister said EVMs should initially be used in urban areas limitedly as the number of educated people in cities and towns is higher. The EVMs should gradually be used across the country, the Prime Minister added.

Sheikh Hasina also stressed the need for making it sure the machines are not misused. Mustafa Kamal said, “Today, Ecnec approved a total of 14 projects with the total estimated cost of Tk 12,544.94 crore.” Of the total cost, Tk 8,842.33 crore will come from government fund, while Tk 257.01 crore from the own funds of the organisations concerned and Tk 3,445.60 crore as project assistance.

Of the 14 approved projects, there are 11 new projects, while the remaining three are revised ones. About the EVM project, he said they have taken the project which will be implemented in three phases. “The EVMs (1.5 lakh EVMs) will be procured in three phases.” Replying to a question how many EVMs will be used in the next national election, the minister said the Election Commission will decide it.

He said the Planning Commission placed the project in an Ecnec meeting conducting a feasibility study over it. “We didn’t approve it hurriedly.”

The main objectives of the project are to development of democracy through arranging fairer and freer elections; making the vote-casting process transparent, flawless, credible and modern technology-based one; enhancing the credibility of election results through gradual introduction of 1,50,000 sets of electronic voting machines, providing training to 3,110 different-level officials and employees concerned over the vote-casting through EVM and enhancing public awareness over participation in the electoral process.

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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