Even as the Election Commission prepares for the mega counting operations for May 23 to release the results of recently concluded Lok Sabha Polls, videos are surfacing online showing ‘suspicious’ movements of the Electronic Voting Machines in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Bihar. After these videos went viral, the poll panel was issued a clarification stating that. All extant guidelines are being following, the poll panel said. “In all cases, polled EVMS and VVPATs were sealed properly in front of the political parties candidates in videography. CCTV cameras are installed. CPAF security is there. Candidates are allowed to have watch on strong room at a time and at a point one representatives of each candidate 24 ×7.The allegations are baseless,” the Election Commission said in statement.
1/n Pl note the followg factual reports from concerned Returning Officers in context of varied clips being circulated on media platforms on EVM strong room issues. Clarification issued by RO👇wrt mishandling of EVMs in Chandauli, UP. All extant guidelines issued by ECI followed. pic.twitter.com/wNOS3WmtvL— Sheyphali Sharan (@SpokespersonECI) May 21, 2019
In UP’s Ghazipur, BSP leaders have alleged that an attempt was made to take the EVMS from the strong room. “It was resolved by conveying the ECI instructions,” the poll panel said. In Chandauli, a mobile phone clip surfaced on Monday showing EVMs being off-loaded and put in a room inside what appears to be a counting centre. The poll panel said that it was a ‘frivolous allegations by some people.’ EVMs were in proper security and protocol, the EC added. Such kind of allegations were also reported from Jhansi, Mau, Mirzapur, some areas of Haryana, Punjab and Bihar.
In conversation with News Nation, former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav said that “something is horribly wrong with the EVMs.”
Meanwhile, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday said the silence of the Election Commission (EC) was worrying even after "evidence" had come to the fore that the electronic voting machines (EVMs) used in the just-concluded Lok Sabha polls were being switched. "Worrying that despite solid evidence about EVMs being switched, @ECISVEEP hasnt clarified any of these concerns. A farcical wave backed by dubious exit polls followed by manipulating EVMs is another Balakot in the making," she said in a tweet. Reacting to exit polls predicting a clear majority for the BJP-led NDA in the next Lok Sabha, the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said a poll victory of the saffron party should not deter the resolve of people to fight for what is right.