Hyderabad: Alleging that a false case was
registered against Hari K Prasad, a city-based computer
engineer arrested by Maharashtra Police on charges of stealing
an Electronic Voting Machine (EVM), the Janata Party today
demanded the Centre and the Election Commission immediately
withdraw the "bogus" case against him.
"Prasad did not commit any crime," party president
Subramanian Swamy said while asserting that the software
specialist, arrested last month from here, had only
demonstrated that EVMs can be tampered with.
Addressing a press conference jointly organised by VeTA
(Citizens for Verifiability, Transparency, and Accountability
in Elections) and Jana Chaitanya Vedika here, Swamy said the
incident had become a "laughing stock" and an "international
shame" on India.
Quoting a recent Supreme Court judgement that "if false
arrests takes place then the government can be sued," Swamy
said, "I am warning the government and the ECI that I will sue
them for Rs 10 crore if they do not withdraw this case against
"I demand that the bogus case against Hari Prasad be
withdrawn...," Swamy said.
Swamy said he had written a letter to Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh seeking protection for Hari Prasad and added
that he would also meet the Prime Minister on the issue.
"If any harms happens to Prasad, then I will hold the
government responsible for any such act," he said.
Stating that selection of the government through election
is a sacred matter, Swamy said "we should be absolutely sure
that the procedure is valid and transparent."
The former Union Minister further demanded the government
and ECI should provide a paper receipt after casting of a vote
similar to that received during an ATM transaction.
"If it cannot make the provision then it is better the
ECI return back to ballot papers as it happened in Europe," he
During ballot paper voting there used to be rigging at
polling-booth level but with EVMs chip a whole election can be
manipulated, Swamy alleged.