Blaming Centre as “beiman” (cheat), Bahujan Samaj Party on Wednesday traded charges of EVM tampering along with the opposition parties Congress and SP on government. The pandemonium forced a brief adjournment of proceedings in Rajya Sabha over alleged tampering of electronic voting machines (EVM) to favour the ruling BJP.
Opposition members trooped into the Well of the House calling the government a “cheat”, forcing Deputy Chairman P J Kurien to adjourn the proceedings for about 7 minutes.
The Government vehemently denied the charge, saying if anybody has a problem, they should go to the Election Commission as Parliament is not the forum to agitate.
Congress and SP members gave as many as four notices under rule 267 seeking suspension of business to take up the issue, which the treasury benches vehemently opposed.
Mayawati (BSP) called the ruling party “beiman” (cheat), a comment that led to pandemonium in the House with Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi saying the BSP supremo had “insulted the people of the country” and insulted democracy.
Opposition members protested saying the barb was directed at BJP and not to the people, but the protests from treasury benches led Kurien to say he would expunge such remarks from the records.
Angry exchanges were also witnessed between Naqvi and Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad.
Naqvi said the general elections in 2004 and 2009 and the assembly elections in Bihar, Punjab and Delhi where the BJP lost, were all conducted using EVMs and the Congress did not seem to have any objections then.
Azad shot back saying the governments under Congress rule did not tamper with EVMs and its only now that such practices have crept in.
When the House met for the day, Digvijaya Singh (Cong) said the testing of EVMs for a by-election in Madhya Pradesh had a few days back had shown manipulations wherein vote would be credited to BJP irrespective of the candidate for whom it has been cast.
He demanded that ballot papers be used for the upcoming by-elections and elections henceforth.