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Techie Who Offered to Hack EVMs for Congress Candidate Arrested In Gwalior

Voting had taken place in Madhya Pradesh on November 28, and results will be declared on December 11.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:July 18, 2019, 5:33 PM IST
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Techie Who Offered to Hack EVMs for Congress Candidate Arrested In Gwalior
Image for representation.

Gwalior: A man who had approached a Congress candidate from Bhind with a promise that he could hack Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) to assure his win in the recently-held Madhya Pradesh Assembly polls, has been arrested by the Gwalior police.

It was Ramesh Dubey, a Congress candidate from Bhind, who nabbed the man with the help of his associates at Gwalior railway station on Tuesday evening and handed him over to the police.

The accused had initially presented himself as Abhay Joshi, an unemployed electronics engineer from Lucknow. But later the police identified him as Neeraj Singh Rathore, 33-year-old resident of Orai in Uttar Pradesh’s Jalaun district.

Dubey said that on December 3 he received a call from one Ajay Singh of New Delhi, who claimed that Joshi, a software engineer, could help in hacking the EVMs kept in the strong room. The caller claimed that Joshi could even prevent a possible hacking from Dubey’s opponents.

The Congress candidate told the police that he later received a call from Joshi, who was staying in Gwalior. Joshi told him that he could help turn the results in his favour. “Sensing the trap, I pretended to accept the offer and asked Abhay Joshi to meet me at a restaurant close to Gwalior railway station’s platform number one,” said Dubey.

Dubey, who was on his way to Bhopal to attend a party meeting on December 6, made a stopover at the railway station to meet Joshi. “When we met, Joshi claimed that he could hack EVMs through his connection with the district election officer. He quoted Rs 2.5 lakh for hacking each EVM and demanded half the amount in advance. Realising foul play, one of my aides called up Gwalior SP and narrated the matter,” he said.

“The fraudster sensed out intentions and tried to escape but my aides overpowered him and handed him to the police,” added Dubey, who later staged a dharna outside the Gwalior’s strong room to draw attention to the lack of EVM safety.

“The man has been identified as Neeraj Singh Rathore of UP’s Jalaun district and we are quizzing him about his contacts and also scanning his call records,” said an officer from Gwalior police.

Rathore is class 12 dropout and is unemployed, said the cops.

Meanwhile, in another EVM related development, Madhya Pradesh’s Chief Electoral Officer VL Kantha Rao suspended Khurai SDM Vikas Singh on Wednesday after some electronic voting machines reached the strong room 48 hours after polling.

Voting had taken place in Madhya Pradesh on November 28, and results will be declared on December 11.

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