Election Commission mulls legal action on anti-EVM campaign

“It has come to the notice of Election Commission of India that an event claiming to demonstrate EVMs used by ECI can be tampered with, has been organised in London."

January 21, 2019 07:57 pm | Updated 10:48 pm IST - NEW DELHI

The Election Commission of India in New Delhi. File

The Election Commission of India in New Delhi. File

The Election Commission on Monday said it was examining the option of taking legal action on the claims made at a press conference in London that the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) used by the electoral body could be hacked and that the 2014 Lok Sabha polls were rigged.

Syed Shuja, a U.S.-based cyberexpert levelled the allegations via Skype at an event hosted by the Indian Journalist Association and the Foreign Press Association in London. He claimed that he had intended to travel to the U.K. from an undisclosed location in the U.S. four days ago but was attacked and injured and was unable to travel.

He also alleged that the individuals who were meant to bring an EVM to the venue for him to be able to demonstrate alleged tampering had been “offered a great deal of money” and “decided not to show up.”

“It has come to the notice of the Election Commission of India that an event claiming to demonstrate EVMs used by ECI can be tampered with, has been organised in London. Whereas the ECI has been wary of becoming a party to this motivated slugfest, ECI firmly stands by the empirical facts about the foolproof nature of ECI-EVMs deployed in elections in India,” said the Commission.

“It needs to be reiterated that these EVMs are manufactured in Bharat Electronics Limited and Electronics Corporation of India Limited under very strict supervisory and security conditions and there are rigorous standard operating procedures meticulously observed at all stages under the supervision of a committee of eminent technical experts constituted way back in 2010. It is being separately examined as to what legal action can and should be taken in the matter,” the EC said.

Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi said: “We cannot deny it, we cannot affirm it. But, it is clear that it adds to the significant body of thoughts which has grave doubts about the authenticity, objectivity and correctness of these machines.”

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