The Election Commission of India (ECI) will organise an international webinar with delegates from 45 countries on ‘‘Issues, Challenges and Protocols for Conducting Elections during Covid-19” on Monday.
This is the first webinar being held by the India’s Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB) Centre. Over 120 delegates from 45 countries, including Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Republic of Korea, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Turkey, will be participating in the webinar.
Korea and Sri Lanka are two countries to have held national elections amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The webinar is being held on the completion of the EC’s one-year-long chairmanship of the Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB). A-WEB is the largest association of Election Management Bodies (EMBs) worldwide. At present, A-WEB has 115 EMBs as Members and 16 regional associations and organisations as associate members. The ECI has been very closely associated with the process of formation of A-WEB since 2011-12.
Participating EMBs and organisations, with the first session being chaired by election commissioner Sushil Chandra, will make presentations. The first session will include presentations by Fiji, Republic of Korea, Mongolia and Taiwan as well as International IDEA and A-WEB where these EMBs and organisations will share the challenges faced as well as their experiences and perspectives for holding elections during the pandemic. The second session will be chaired by newly-appointed election commissioner Rajiv Kumar with presentations from South Africa, Indonesia, Bangladesh, India, Malawi and IFES.
“It is hoped that interactions and discussions at the International Webinar on 21 September will provide a good opportunity to all the participants to exchange ideas and learn from each other’s experience of holding and managing elections in challenging times of Covid-19 pandemic to ensure free, fair, transparent as well as safe elections,” the ECI said in a statement.