A day after a London-based hacker claimed that EVMs were hacked in 2014 elections, the BJP on Monday called it a “Congress sponsored event.” Questioning the presence of Congress leader Kapil Sibal at the press conference held in London, the BJP said the party is already ” finding excuses” for their defeat in the upcoming 2019 elections.
Addressing a press conference in New Delhi, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad accused the party of “defaming the popular mandate” given by the voters in 2014.
The London-based hacker identified as Syed Suja claimed that the 2014 general election was “rigged” through the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs), which, he claims, can be hacked.
Suja also alleged that other than the BJP, the SP, BSP, AAP and Congress too are involved in the rigging of the EVMs. He had also invited the Election Commission and political parties to the event, but only Congress leader Kapil Sibal turned up.
The hacking claim triggered ripples across political circles. While Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said “our great democracy must be protected”, the AAP said it had never contacted Suja. The Congress has been silent on the issue. Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav said, “If someone has raised a question then it must be thought that what is the reason that a developed country like Japan is not using EVMs. It is not a question of a political party, it’s a question of trust in democracy,” ANI quoted him as saying.
The Election Commission rejected the claims. It is also planning to take legal action against Suja. “It has come to our notice that an event claiming to demonstrate EVMs used by ECI can be tampered with, has been organised in London. ECI has been wary of becoming a party to this motivated slugfest and stands by empirical facts about the foolproof nature of ECI EVMs,” the Election Commission said.
The commission further said EVMs used in Indian elections were manufactured by Bharat Electronics and Electronics Corporation of India under “very strict supervisory and security conditions”.
Reacting to the EVM hacking allegations, Union Human Resources Minister, Prakash Javadekar said, “In Kolkata rally, they did not form manifesto committee, they also did not set up any committee to look into that what will be their common minimum programme but they formed only one committee and it was about EVM (electronic voting machine). They know they are going to lose elections so they want to make EVMs the excuse of their defeat.”