The issue of alleged tampering of Electronic Voting Machines should be taken seriously as it is putting a “question mark” on the “democratic set up” of the country, Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia said here today.
Scindia, the Congress chief whip in the Lok Sabha, said the Election Commission should clear all doubts concerning the machine, including if the EVMs’ software is tamper-proof.
“The doubts raised about the EVMs should be dispelled. Any issue putting a question mark on the democratic system should be dealt with all seriousness,” Scindia told reporters while replying to a question.
The Guna MP said that Election Commission had taken up the issue seriously when questions were raised during the public demonstrations of EVMs before the by-election in Ater (Bhind) in Madhya Pradesh last month.
“The EC had acted swiftly when the questions were raised on EVMs before the Ater by-poll. The EC had created an atmosphere of trust after the Congress made a complaint in this regard,” he said.
A major row had erupted before the Ater bypoll, when a video of VVPAT demonstration by a poll official purportedly showed that irrespective of the votes cast to a party, the machine attached to the EVM dispensed slips showing votes having gone to the BJP only.
Scindia said the poll watchdog should prove that it is technically unfeasible to alter the EVMs’ software.
“It is being said in the world of electronics that the software of EVMs is not completely safe. It is for the EC to clear all such doubts,” he added.
The issue of tampering of EVMs has been raised by parties like the BSP and Aam Aadmi Party after the Uttar Pradesh election, which was swept by the BJP.
The Congress had backed BSP leader Mayawati’s demand for a probe into the EVMs’ alleged vulnerability to tampering bids and appealed to the Election Commission to consider paper ballots in place of EVMs.
The AAP on Tuesday “demonstrated” in the Delhi assembly as to how an EVM could be rigged after one of its MLAs “hacked” a prototype.
The EC, however, trashed the AAP’s claims saying a “duplicate” EVM was hacked.