In a bid to allay doubts regarding the functioning of EVMs, the Election Commission on Wednesday reiterated that checks and measures have been put in place to prevent any possible misuse or procedural lapses.
“The Election Commission of India has full confidence in the non-tamperability of EVMs and assures all voters that the EVMs used by the Commission in elections are non-tamperable,” the EC said in a statement. AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal on February 3 had alleged that during an inspection of EVMs in Delhi Cantonment, the light against the BJP symbol got lit on four EVMs irrespective of the button one pushed.
The EC on Wednesday said that the measures put in place to ensure misuse of EVMs include “rigorous pre-election test and inspection of each EVM by the technicians”, mock-poll at various stages and two level randomisation — with the involvement of candidates and their agents — for allotment of EVMs to various constituencies and subsequent dispatch to various polling stations.
“Preparation of the EVMs for elections is done in the presence of the candidates/their agents and sealing of the prepared EVMs is also done in candidates/agents presence. Paper seals guard against any unauthorised access to the EVMs after preparation. EVMs are then kept in sealed strong rooms with provision for the candidates to put their individual seals on the strong rooms,” the EC statement said.
After the polls, the EVMs are also sealed in such a manner that there is no physical access to any of the buttons on the EVMs, the EC stated.
“The machines are put in the strong room again in presence of the candidates and observer of the commission under video camera surveillance. The strong room is allowed to be guarded by the supporters of the candidates, besides police. At every step, the EVM is very well protected and elaborate arrangements are in place for the same,” the EC clarified.
The Commission also reiterated its instructions that polling officers should instruct voters to report any malfunctioning of an EVM.
No-shows by a CM and a CM candidate
GANDHINAGAR: Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel’s two-day campaign in the capital, which was scheduled to begin on Wednesday, was cancelled at the last minute. Instead of the Gujarat CM, Heath minister Nitin Patel and Minister of State for Home Rajnikant Patel left for Delhi to help with the election campaign.
On Tuesday, a release from the Gujarat state information bureau had announced that two rallies — in Janakpuri and Pitampura — would be conducted by Anandiben. “Her schedule does not reflect any urgent engagement,” sources in Chief Minister’s Office said, adding that the cancellation was a result of “some last minute changes” by the party.
Meanwhile, television actors dressed as characters from the Mahabharata turned up instead of BJP CM candidate Kiran Bedi at a public meeting in Jahangirpuri.
Dressed in ornate yellow, Firoz Khan and Surendra Pal, who had played actors Arjuna and Dronacharya, respectively, in the TV show, campaigned for the candidate Rajesh Yadav.
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