Eyebrows raised over ‘movement of EVMs’ ahead of counting
GUWAHATI: Allegations of ‘suspicious movement’ of electronic voting machines (EVMs) with an intention to tamper them have surfaced in parts of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab and Haryana ahead of the counting of votes on May 23.
A video clip showing off-loading of EVMs from a truck to put them in a room inside the counting room complex is doing the rounds on social media. The complex is situated not far away from the Varanasi LS constituency, from which Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking a second term.
In eastern Uttar Pradesh's Ghazipur, Bahujan Samaj Party candidate held a sit-in demonstration outside a EVMs storage room to protest the ‘suspicious movement’ of EVMs in the area.
However, officials in Ghazipur denied these allegations.
It should be mentioned that a similar incident happened in Amingaon area of Kamrup (R) district in Assam wherein EVMs were allegedly brought from different parts of the state for storing in a private location.
The location is situated opposite to the office of the deputy commissioner, Kamrup (Rural), which is currently being used as a strong room to store some of the EVMs used in the LS elections 2019.
According to Assam Congress general secretary Diganta Choudhury, who previously raised a complaint against the movement of unused EVMs in Amingaon, told G Plus, "Yesterday (May 20) we met the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Assam, Mukesh Sahu, regarding the issue of suspicious movements of EVMs in other parts of the country and have requested him to keep an eye in this.
“He assured us that EC will not open the gates of any warehouses or strong rooms in Assam before the counting begins. EC will use powerpoint presentations if they need to train their employees on how to use EVMs."
Currently, a few districts in Assam including Tezpur, Guwahati and Silchar, have set up warehouses to store unused EVMs. The EC has kept the EVMs used in the recently concluded LS elections in the strong rooms.
File photo of EVMs loaded in a truck in Guwahati