1. Congress urges EC to relax rules for EVM challenge

Congress urges EC to relax rules for EVM challenge

The Election Commission will organise an EVM hackathon from June 3 but he said the rules were a "barrier to a thorough test" and asked the EC to have a relook at the rules.

By: | New Delhi | Updated: May 26, 2017 10:42 PM
Congress, Election Commission, EC, EVM challenge, AICC, congress, Randeep Surjewala The Congress today urged the Election Commission to relax the three rules of the EVM challenge that prevents challengers from conducting a thorough test on the machines and said “their inclusion undermines the credibility of the initiative”. (PTI)

The Congress today urged the Election Commission to relax the three rules of the EVM challenge that prevents challengers from conducting a thorough test on the machines and said “their inclusion undermines the credibility of the initiative”. In a letter to the chief election commissioner, AICC communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said in the party’s opinion this challenge must be “fair, transparent and unambiguous in terms of scope, scales and rules”. He noted that the extensive terms and conditions of this challenge unfortunately prevents challengers to conduct a thorough test of the electronic voting machines.

“We urge you to reconsider relaxing the three rules of the challenge as their inclusion undermines the credibility of their initiative,” he said in his letter. He said the rules imposed by the EC say that the challenger will only be provided access to the control units and the ballot units. The Election Commission will organise an EVM hackathon from June 3 but he said the rules were a “barrier to a thorough test” and asked the EC to have a relook at the rules. Only one party has accepted the challenge till today which happened to be the last day for registering with the EC to take the challenge.

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The Congress along with some opposition parties has been at the forefront of opposing EVMs and demanded that the poll body returns to the ballot system in all future elections. The Congress sought relaxation of the conditions that challengers would get access only to the control unit (CU) and ballot unit (BU) of an EVM, that challengers would be allowed only to press buttons; and tampering would be demonstrated only when EVMs are in strong rooms or counting booths. “The EVM is composed of more components, apart from the CU and BU. If challengers don’t have access to all the components, such as motherboard, how will they demonstrate their concerns?” asked the Congress leader.

He observed that a “fair challenge” will send a strong signal to the people about the credibility of EVMs.Surjewala urged the commission to revise the conditions. The EC had in May announced the EVM challenge from June 3 to prove that its EVMs cannot be tampered with or hacked.

  1. S
    Sadasivan
    May 27, 2017 at 8:42 am
    First of all the EC's challenge is extremely unfair.And THE PROBLEM IS,THE ETERNAL CUSTODY OF THE EVMs UNDER EC.This custody has to be handed over to an impartial bod consisting of the stake-holders,which mainly includes THE PEOPLE OF INDIA.The Manual of the EVMs have too be provided,to this IMPARTIAL group taking ETERNAL custody of the EVMs. This type of adamant behaviour by the EC,in a DEMOCRACY cannot be tolerated and is dangerous.The basic flaw in the EC's stand is that it considers ITSELF and the EVMs to be INFALLIBLE.EVMs are MERE machines and are liable to go wrong. The MORE the EC tries such absurd things,the MORE THE PEOPLE would distrust it and the EVMs.
    Reply
    1. V
      VM
      May 27, 2017 at 1:18 am
      I am no way in affiliation with any party. Infact, I like Mr. Surjewala at variuos occasion on his stand on some issues. Well, When Mr. Surjewala became the software Engineer. That's the inherent problem of our leaders. They start speaking on the issues well beyond their understanding and capabilities, which should be left to the SMEs. What EC has offered is genuine and the best approach. The expectation is that all the parties take the challenge and prove if the allegations of tempering are right or wrong. Don't make foolish and Laloo-ish remarks laced with only politics. We are at the door of 22nd century, behave like that. Good, job, EC.
      Reply

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