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EVMs are not tamperable, allegations are baseless: ECI

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Source: Indian Express

Election Commission of India has rejected allegations of tampering of EVMs made by some political parties after the just-concluded assembly elections.

Terming allegation as wild and baseless, Election Commission said that there is no merit in the claims that EVMs can be tampered. Given effective technical and administrative safeguards, EVMs aren’t tamperable and integrity of electoral process is preserved, the EC said.

Citing a court observation, the EC said, “In 2009, in a case before Delhi High Court, all earlier allegations about EVM temperabilities were raised. However, Delhi High Court satisfied with detailed reply of ECI why EVM cannot be rigged and about ECI efforts on developing VVPAT decided and disposed of the case in 2012 that VVPAT may be developed early in consultation with political parties.”

However, if any specific allegation with material facts is presented, it will be looked into with all seriousness on administrative sides, the poll panel said.

BSP chief Mayawati, who was decimated in the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, was the first to raise questions on the EVMs.

Terming the results as “shocking”, Mayawati had said the Election Commission should stop the counting and withhold results and hold fresh polls using traditional paper ballots.

Similarly, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also alleged that EVM tampering may have led to AAP’s poor showing in Punjab.

The AAP chief, whose party won 20 seats in the 117-member assembly with a vote share of 24.9 per cent, claimed that around 20 to 25 per cent of its votes may have been transferred to the SAD-BJP coalition.

The poll result is beyond understanding and raises a big question mark on the reliability of electronic voting machines (EVMs).