Voter ID – How to apply voter id online, Eligibility, Documents required

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Voter ID, also known as EPIC (Electors Photo Identity Card) is a photo identity card issued by the Election Commission of India to all Indian citizens eligible to vote. The purpose of voter ID is to serve as identity proof for voters, increase efficiency and prevent impersonation and fraud during free and fair democratic elections.  This card is also commonly known as an election card, voter’s card, or Voter ID card.

Structure of Voter ID

Sample Voter ID
Sample Voter ID

A voter ID card is an accepted form of personal identification in India as it is issued by a government body. The voter ID consists of the following details:

  • A unique Serial number
  • Photograph of the cardholder
  • A hologram containing the respective state/national symbol
  • Name of cardholder
  • father’s Name of cardholder
  • Gender
  • Card holder’s
  • Card holder’s date of Birth

The card holder’s residential address and signature of the issuing authority (Electoral registration officer) are on the rear side of the voter ID card.

How to Apply for a Voter ID Card?

A citizen of India can apply for a voter ID in three ways; online, offline or through semi-online methods:

OnlineSemi-OnlineOffline
Applicant must begin by visiting the national voter’s service portal (NSVP) website  Applicant must begin by visiting the national voter’s service portal (NSVP) website  Applicant must visit the nearest State Election office and request Form 6.
Click relevant option to register of new voter id  Download ‘form 6’ and fill the form with relevant details.  Fill ‘form 6’ with necessary details and provide all supporting documents such as Identity proof, address proof etc. The applicant may submit the completed form to the respective election office.  
The online ‘form 6’ will open and applicants fill in all the details of Form 6 and submit the form. Additionally, the applicant must upload a photo and supporting documents with reference to Voter ID Status. Submit the completed form 6 along with a photo and supporting documents at an Election Office near you by either post or in person.  On verification of the form, a Voter ID will be issued.

Voter ID is only issued after necessary verification of all documents and details provided by the applicant.

Documents Required For Voter ID Card

Applying for a Voters ID requires you to submit the following documents:

  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of address
  • Photograph

Voter ID Card Eligibility

In order to be eligible for a Voter ID card, individuals must meet the following criteria:

  • An Indian citizen
  • Age: 18 years or above
  • Must have a permanent address

Procedure to Change from Old Voter ID to a New One

The Government of India has come up with the concept of e-PIC Voter ID which is a portable form of photo identity card that is available in PDF format. The e-PIC is currently issued only to the newly registered candidates, i.e. who have registered for Voter ID after November 2020 and have a unique mobile number. 

The government has stated that the existing Voter ID holders will be provided with e-PIC in Phase II of the project.

The newly registered candidates can access their e-PIC as follows.

Step 1: Log in to the National Voters Service Portal.

Step 2: Click on the ‘e-PIC Download’ tile on the home page.

Step 3: Enter the EPIC number or the Form Reference number and select the state you are in. Click ‘Search’.

Step 4: You will receive an OTP on your registered mobile number. Enter the OTP on the screen to confirm.

Step 5: Click on ‘Download e-PIC’ to download your portable voter ID.

Points to Note Before Applying for a Voter ID

Voter ID is an important document required for an Indian citizen as it enables him/her to exercise a fundamental duty of voting in democratic elections. Voter ID also serves as proof of identity and address. Here are the following things to keep a note of:

  • Applicants must be of a minimum legal age of 18 years
  • They should be of sound mind, free of criminal charges and not financially bankrupt
  • They should fill out the relevant documents such as Form 6 and ensure that they provide relevant original documents
  • Applicants must solely apply for Voter ID only through government or government-approved websites and centres
  • Applicants must ensure details such as spelling of their name, date of birth, address and so on are correct
  • Applicants must also ensure that all information that is provided is legally correct in all aspects
  • On successfully receiving the Voter ID, applicants must re-verify their documents and Voter ID to see if the information is correct.

How to Verify Voter ID?

Applicants can verify their Voter ID if they suspect their ID to be a counterfeit by using their Voter ID number. The applicant will have to visit the official website of the Chief Electoral Officer of their state or the nearest state election office.  In doing so they must search and check if their name is present in the electoral roll, following which they can cross verify the details. If there are any discrepancies the applicant must bring it to the notice of the Chief Electoral Officer.

Steps to verify Voter ID:

Step 1: Visit National Voters Services Portal (NVSP)

Step 2: Select “Search in Electoral Roll”

Step 3: Enter your details and verify

Voter ID Correction in Electoral roll

Cardholders who want to make necessary changes/corrections of their details in their voter ID can do so by physically visiting the nearest election office or visiting the online national voters’ service portal and follow the below steps.

If your details are wrong, do not worry. Fill out “Form 8” indicating the voter ID corrections and submit the form along with relevant supporting documents to the Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) or online on the portal. Once you have submitted, the ERO will process your application and make the necessary changes to your voter ID.

Uses of Voter ID

The Voter ID card is used to furnish important details, such as:

  • The card serves as proof of identity and address
  • A Voter ID Card is an acknowledgement that the cardholder is a registered voter
  • The Voter ID has several personal identification features such as the cardholder’s signature & photograph
  • The Voter ID card can be utilised to avail certain government schemes

How to Track the Status of Voter ID Application?

Voter ID applicants can now track the status of their application on the State Election Commission website. Each Indian state has their respective election commission website. 

To track the status of voter ID:

  1. Visit the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) official website.
  2. Select ‘Know the Voter ID status’.
  3. You can also apply on the National Voters’ Services Portal and select ‘Search your Name in the electoral roll’.

As an alternative, you can visit the National Voters’ Services Portal to track your application. Refer to the image below taken as an example.

Step 1 – On the home page, select the ‘Track Application Status’ option.

Step 2 – Fill in the application number or EPIC number.

Step 3 – Enter the following details:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • State
  • Father’s name
  • District constituency

Step 4 – Select ‘Search’ and get information on your voter ID card status.

Didn’t Receive Voter ID? Here’s What To Do

If you haven’t received the Voter ID, do not worry. Follow the instructions below:

  • Visit the nearest election office or the CEO official website
  • Enter your reference number and details that you received while submitting form 6
  • Select ‘Track Status’
  • You will see the updated status of your application

It may approximately take 30 days from the date of making an online application for your voter ID to reach you. If there are any discrepancies in receiving your voter ID, you can physically visit the state election office and rectify things.

NRI Voter ID 

Non-resident Indians can still exercise their right to vote. NRIs can now apply online, or offline if they are in India and have their Voter IDs issued.  NRIs have to be present in the country and their constituency to cast their vote and cannot do it remotely as of now.

Related Information

EVMs are Electronic Voting Machines used in State and General Elections. EVMs have helped make the entire voting process more user-friendly, secure, fast and paperless.

SVEEP Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation is the right to vote in democratic elections that were won after a great struggle by the early freedom fighters of India. The Election Commission of India (ECI) introduced a programme called SVEEP aimed at educating the Indian citizens about the importance of voting and how to exercise their fundamental right.

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