New Delhi: The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Saturday demonstrated the working of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail System (VVPATs), while brushing aside the EVM tampering allegation.
Asserting that EVM tampering is a wrong allegation, B.P. Mishra, a technical officer of Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL), demonstrated as how the EVM and VVPAT work.
"EVM tampering is not possible and the allegations of its malfunctioning are wrong," Mishra told ANI.
ECIL employee Kharesh Yadav also demonstrated the procedure of EVM and VVPAT.
"These machines have a standalone printer. When any ballot button is pressed, a slip is generated carrying voter`s and candidate`s name," Yadav told ANI.
While earlier in the week, the poll panel had said it would offer an `opportunity` to the political parties to prove that EVMs used in the recently held assembly polls were tampered with or can be tampered even with laid down safeguards.
The ECI also convened an all-party meeting over the issue of EVM and other electoral reforms.In its communication to the presidents of all the seven national and 48 state political parties, the poll panel sent a status paper on EVMs and VVPAT.
Today's live demo comes amid allegations raised by the Opposition that the EC's EVMs are vulnerable to hacking and tampering. The claims first emerged after the recent Uttar Pradesh Assembly election, which saw the Bharatiya Janata Party romping home with a huge win.
From Congress to the Aam Aadmi Party, several leaders from Opposition parties, including Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, have raised concerns over the trustworthiness of the country's voting machines.
The Election Commission has maintained that its machines are tamper-proof but amid rising controversy on the issue, agreed to let political parties and experts attempt to prove the allegations at an 'EVM Challenge'.
Notably, the Commission has refused to use the term 'hackathon' to describe the challenge, contending that the word cannot be used since EVMs are not connected to the internet.
Meanwhile, the Aam Aadmi Party held its own demonstration on EVM hacking in the Delhi Assembly.
Party MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj brought in a dummy EVM and proceeded to show how the machine could be purportedly hacked to get it to cast votes for only one party/candidate.
As per an Election Commission announcement, the live demonstration of the functioning of the EVMs and VVPATs will be followed by a press conference.
Watch the press conference of Election Commission of India:
— ANI (@ANI_news) May 20, 2017