New Delhi [India], December 7 (ANI): A delegation led by German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock met Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar and Election Commissioners Anup Chandra Pandey and Arun Goel at Nirvachan Sadan in New Delhi on Tuesday.
Baerbock was accompanied by four Members of the German Parliament - Agnieszka Brugger, Thomas Erndl, Ulrich Lechte, and Andreas Larem with Philipp Ackermann, German Ambassador to India and other officers from the German Foreign Office.
Speaking on the occasion, CEC Rajiv Kumar said that the idea of democracy is deeply rooted in India's historical context and traditions. Giving an overview of the magnitude of Indian elections, he informed the German delegation of the detailed exercise that ECI conducts for over 950 million voters across 1.1 million polling stations, engaging about 11 million polling personnel ensuring a free and fair inclusive, accessible and participative elections. CEC Kumar said that apart from the logistical challenges, the disruptive impact of fake social media narratives potentially affecting free and fair elections is fast emerging as a common challenge for most Elections Management Bodies.
Brugger, while interacting with the Commission appreciated the vast exercise of electoral management by ECI in the largest democracy in the world given the challenges of diverse geography, culture and electorate in India. The minister was also briefed about the extensive use of technology by ECI in the conduct of elections broadly under three verticals of voters' participation, political parties/candidates and election machinery logistics.
Both India and Germany are members of the International Institute of Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), Stockholm and the Community of Democracies, Warsaw. ECI under the aegis of Summit for Democracy will also be organizing the second international conference on 'Use of Technology & Elections Integrity' in January 2023 ahead of National Voters Day 2023. Senior officials from the German Foreign Office, the German Embassy in New Delhi and the Election Commission of India were also present during the occasion. (ANI)