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EVMs Used in Uttarakhand Constituency to be Taken Into Judicial Custody

Representative image.

Representative image.

The Uttarakhand High Court on Thursday ordered authorities to take one of the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) used in the recent Assembly elections in the state in judicial custody.

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Pallavi Ghosh

New Delhi: The Uttarakhand High Court on Thursday ordered authorities to take into judicial custody Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) used in Vikasnagar constituency during the recent Assembly elections. The order came after a Congress candidate filed a petition alleging EVM tampering.

The court directed the judicial magistrate of Vikasnagar in Dehradun district to seize EVMs used in February polls and issued notices to the Election Commission, the state election commission, chief secretary and the BJP candidate who won the poll.

Uttarkhand went to the polls in February-March along with Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa and Manipur. The BJP won a big majority of 57 seats in the 70-seat Uttarakhand assembly. The Congress won 11.

The court order comes amid a heated war of words between opposition parties, particularly the Aam Aadmi Party, and the BJP over the use of EVMs, with the former alleging that the machines were rigged to favour the saffron party.

The AAP had claimed that the EVMs used in Punjab, where the party made its electoral debut this March, were tampered with and had demanded that the Election Commission bring back ballot papers. It had also accused the poll panel of favouring the BJP.

ALSO READ | At AAP's Stock-taking Meeting, EVMs Not the Main Agenda

The AAP stuck to its stand on Wednesday, alleging that “faulty EVMs” had to its loss in the MCD elections. The BJP won the elections with 184 wards, while the AAP took the second spot with 46 wards. The Congress suffered a rout, winning only 30 wards.

The commission, however, has denied the charges, saying the EVMs used were tamper-proof. Sources in the poll panel said it plans to organise a challenge ‘hackathon’ in May to invite technocrats and representatives from political parties to prove that the EVMs could not be hacked.

(With PTI Inputs)


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