MUMBAI: In a surprising demand, Maharashtra Congress president Ashok Chavan on Monday said that Election Commission must install "network jammers" in and around strongrooms where Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) are kept before counting of votes.
Talking to media after meeting the chief electoral officer (CEO) on the issue, the senior Congress leader claimed that wireless networks like mobile phone towers and wi-fi networks can be used by hackers to tamper the EVMs and this can only be prevented by the installation of jammers.
"These jammers should be installed during the counting process as well. We demand that such network jammers be installed immediately in all Lok Sabha constituencies in the state," Chavan said.
Chavan said that during the meeting with CEO, the Congress delegation has urged the EC to declare the result of each round of counting only after it is duly prepared and signed by the returning officer. He added that the counting for next round should not start before the completion of the entire first round process and the poll panel should consider a request for a recount round-wise.
"Our demand for testing 50 per cent of EVMs against VVPAT slip remains," he added.
"As per the present counting process of each EVM, the votes of each candidate on serial number 1 are displayed first in ascending order. We would like to request you (CEO) to reverse the counting order in each EVM starting from the last serial number candidate to the serial number 1 candidate in the descending or anti-clockwise order," Chavan was quoted as saying by PTI.
In a related development, Congress' ally in Maharashtra NCP on Monday claimed that BJP-Shiv Sena candidates may tamper the EVMs. The NCP demanded that candidates must be barred by the EC from entering EVM strongrooms.
"The candidates of the ruling parties can resort to EVM tampering using technology to change results," Maharashtra NCP chief Jayant Patil said.