The Election Commission of India on July 3, 2018, launched a mobile app, called ‘Cvigil,’ for citizens to report any violation of the model code of conduct during elections. It was launched by Chief Election Commissioner Shri. O.P. Rawat, along with the Election Commissioners Shri Sunil Arora and Shri Ashok Lavasa.
Upon successful completion of the trial that is underway, the application will be made available for general use by all, right from the forthcoming Assembly elections in the States of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, and Rajasthan. The practical use of the app during the four-state Assembly polls will also serve as a pilot initiative before it is put to extensive use during the next Lok Sabha General Elections.
The app requires an Android smartphone equipped with a camera, good internet connection, and GPS access. The operating system should be Android Jellybean and above. The application supports all the latest Android smartphones.
1. “cVIGIL” will allow anyone in the election-bound state to report violations of Model Code of Conduct (MCC) that comes into effect from the date of announcement of elections and goes on till a day after the polls.
2. By using this app, citizens can immediately report on incidents of misconduct within minutes of having witnessed them and without having to rush to the office of the returning officer to lodge a complaint.
3. The automated location mapping will be done by the app using the Geographic Information System. After its successful submission through the app, the vigilant citizen gets a Unique ID to track and receive the follow-up updates on her or his mobile.
4. So far, the complaints about violations of Model Code of Conduct often could not be followed instantly, leading to the violators escaping detection from the action squads. Also, the lack of any documented evidence in the form of pictures or videos was seen as a hurdle in verifying a complaint. Further, the absence of a robust response system to quickly and accurately identify the scene of occurrence of violations with the help of geographical location details hampered election officers’ ability to apprehend the violators. The new app is expected to fill in all these gaps and create a fast-track complaint reception and redressal system.