The Election Commission has trashed reports of faults in some EVMs in the Dholpur bypoll conducted on Sunday.
A media report had quoted a voter and the Congress candidate as saying that some EVMs recorded votes for BJP even when people voted for Congress. The issue snowballed into a controversy after Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal raised doubts over the Dholpur bypoll. “Why defective EVMs voting only BJP? They not “defective”. Their software changed. Let EC give us one of these EVM, we’ll prove they r tamperd,” Kejriwal tweeted, sharing an Aaj Tak news report that claimed that 18 “faulty” EVMs had to be replaced after complaints from voters.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Chief Electoral Officer, Rajasthan, Ashwini Bhagat said, “The Dholpur collector probed the complaints and no fault was found. Media reports making such claims are false.” He said the voter and the Congress candidate quoted in the media reports “have given in writing that they did not make any such complaints”.
“We have sent a report to the Election Commission of India and they are satisfied with it.”
The Indian Express sent an e-mail to Aaj Tak, seeking its response on the matter, but did not receive a reply. Sources in the channel have questioned that if there was no irregularity, why did the EC order a repoll at booth no 163.
However, the Chief Electoral Officer said the repoll was ordered for a different reason. “It was found that the mock voting data on these EVMs had not been erased after Saturday’s trial. The actual voting was held with the mock votes still stored, which led to all the data getting mixed up. We received a report on this from the collector and informed the EC, which has ordered a repoll there tomorrow,” Bhagat said.
Congress candidate Banwari Lal Sharma, meanwhile, said, “I did complain about technical errors observed in some EVMs, like delayed response etc. But I did not say anything to anyone about EVMs recording votes wrongly.”