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Explained: What is Remote EVM, EC’s proposed reform for domestic migrant voters



The Election Commission of India (ECI) plans to deploy Remote Voting Machines (RVMs) to allow domestic migrant voters to vote from locations other than their registered constituency. However, it has been marred by controversy, as the scheduled demonstration of the voting machine was cancelled due to opposition parties’ concerns about possibility of the device manipulation.

What is the current provision for remote voting?

Currently, ECI allows postal ballot voting for the specific category of people not being able to vote-in-person at designated polling station in their registered constituency.

1. Postal ballot facility for voting from within the constituency is available for senior citizens, PwDs, covid-affected and personnel of essential services.

2. Postal ballot facility for voting from outside constituency is only available to voters belonging to distinct categories like Service Voters, Special Office holders, persons on election duty and persons under preventive detention.

ALSO READ: Make remote EVM foolproof

How ECI plans to help migrant voters use their franchise?

In a concept paper first published last month, ECI stated that various options like two-way physical transit postal ballots, proxy voting, early voting in special Early Voting Centres, one- way or two-way electronic transmission of postal ballots (ETPBS), Internet-based voting system and so on were explored.

Considering various aspects like robustness and integrity of the system, familiarity of the voters with the method, availability of a time-tested credible technology and faith of voters and political parties alike, the poll watchdog says, it has zeroed down the option of using multi-constituency Remote EVM (RVM).

What is Remote EVM (RVM)?

The RVM system allows migrated voters to vote in their home constituency elections on the same day that they are registered to vote in their current residence.

It is a stand-alone, non-networked system with the same security features as existing Indian EVMs and offers the same voting experience to voters.

The RVM system is essentially a modified version of the existing EVM system that, through the use of dynamic ballot display, can cater to multiple constituencies at a single polling station.

How does Remote EVM (RVM) work?

According to ECI’s 13-page concept paper, the working of RVM is as followed:

1. The proposed RVM voting method necessitates that remote voters pre-register with his home constituency for remote voting facilities by applying online/offline within a pre-determined time before elections.

2. Voter information will be verified in the elector’s home constituency, and the voter’s request for remote voting will be approved after successful verification by designating him or her as a remote voter to vote in a remote location (a location other than the voter’s home constituency).

3. Special multi-constituency remote voting polling stations will be set up in the places of their current residence.

It should be noted that voter turnout in the 2019 General Elections was 67.4 percent, implying that over 30 crore registered voters did not exercise their franchise. There are numerous reasons for a voter not voting, but inability to vote due to internal migration (domestic migrants) is one of the most prominent.

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Mann ki Baat: India’s techade dream to be fulfilled by innovators, says PM Modi



PTI | | Posted by Ritu Maria Johny

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday that domestic patent filings have outscored the country’s foreign patent filings as he expressed confidence that India’s dream of “techade” will be fulfilled on the strength of its innovators.

This underscores the country’s increasing scientific capabilities, he said in the first episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’ in the new year.

Modi has in the past used “techade” to describe the decade being dominated by technologies and India making most of it.

He said India’s rank in patent filling is seventh globally while it is fifth in trademark registration. India’s patent registration has risen by 50 per cent in the last five years, the prime minister said, noting that its ranking in the global innovation index has surged to 40 from below 80 in 2015.

“I am confident that India’s dream of techade will be fulfilled by its innovators and their patents,” he said.

The premier Indian Institute of Science had 145 patents in 2022 which is a rare record, Modi said.

In his address, Modi noted that this year’s Padma awards include a number of tribal people or those working for the community besides those who have strengthened the world of music.

He urged people to read about the winners and said their stories will inspire new generations.

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Mann Ki Baat: E-waste can harm environment if not disposed, says PM Modi



Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday called for a proper disposal of e-waste, saying it can become a great force to build a circular economy. During his first ‘Mann Ki Baat’ address of 2023, the prime minister cited a United Nations report which stated that 50 million tonnes of e-waste is being thrown every year.

“Can you imagine how much it is? Even if all commercial planes made in human history are weighed together, it will still be less than this e-waste. It is like, every second eight hundred laptops are being thrown away. About 17 types of precious metals can be extracted from this E-Waste through different processes”, he said.

“Therefore recycling of e-waste is no less than making gold from waste”, the prime minister said.

ALSO READ: Mann ki Baat: PM Modi talks about ‘People’s Padma’, recommends this book

“Whenever someone replaces their old device, it becomes necessary to keep in mind whether it is discarded properly or not. If E-Waste is not disposed, it can also harm our environment. If done carefully, it can become a great force in Circular Economy of Recycle and Reuse”, he added.

The prime minister also said that domestic patent filings in India have outscored the country’s foreign patent filings. He expressed confidence that India’s dream of ‘Techade’ will be fulfilled on the strength of its innovators.

Modi said India’s rank in patent filling is seventh globally while it is fifth in trademark registration. India’s patent registration has risen by 50 per cent in the last five years, the prime minister said, noting that its ranking in the global innovation index has surged to 40 from below 80 in 2015.

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This 45-year-old Biotech CEO spends $2 million a year to be 18 again



Bryan Johnson is a California-based Biotech CEO, who is 45 going on 18…No, really. The entrepreneur, along with a team of 30 doctors, is on a mission to biohack youthfulness by spending over $2 million (approximately 16 crore) annually. According to a Bloomberg report, the experimental programme titled Project Blueprint consists of a strict vegan diet of 1,977 calories daily, high intensity exercise, consistent bedtime, regular ultrasounds, MRIs, colonoscopies and blood tests to make Johnson have the health of an 18-year-old. He even has a machine to monitor the number of erections at night, which are reportedly similar to a teenager’s.

His day starts with two dozen supplements and a green juice with creatine and collagen peptides, and tracking of his body fat, heart rate variations and blood glucose levels. He also dons blue-light-blocking glasses, which filter the brain-stimulating blue rays from electronic devices, two hours before hitting the sack.

The efforts to stop time in its tracks have shown early results with doctors saying the software CEO now has the heart of a 37-year-old, the skin of a 28-year-old, and the lung capacity of an 18-year-old, gum inflammation of a 17-year-old and a record reversal of at least 5 years overall.

Led by Oliver Zolman, a 29-year-old physician who aims to prove that humans can decrease the medical age of their organs by 25%, charges $1,000 hourly for the medical tests undertaken by Johnson.

The CEO of KernelCo, a startup that manufactures $50,000-apiece helmets that analyze brain signals, has also started a website called Rejuvenation Olympics which ranks 1750 people who are striving to reverse their age, with Johnson topping the charts.

In his 30s, after selling his company Braintree Payment Solutions to EBay for $800 million, his mental and physical health went for a toss due to the stressful lifestyle. He was inspired to chase youthfulness after battling depression and obesity. He now aspires for all his major organs — including brain, liver, kidneys, teeth, penis and rectum — to be as healthy as a teen’s.

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