In a big surprise, the Uttarakhand High Court today stayed the Election Commissions’ EVM challenge which it had organised on June 3, oneindia.com reports. The court while observing that the poll body does not have right to organise such exercise, called the entire exercise ‘unconstitutional’. The high court, while issuing the stay order, said that the hackathon scheduled to be held tomorrow cannot be organised, the report said further. However, according to NDTV, EC says it will not drop its plans – the verdict by the court is expected later in the day. The website also added that the case was filed by Dr Ramesh Pandey, a Congressman, and he has said that the EC cannot hold the event since it has no authpority to do so.
Meanwhile, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had announced yesterday that it would organise its own EVM challenge on Saturday, after the election body had rejected party’s ‘open hackathon’ request, a PTI report had said. It is expected to invite experts from Election Commission, political parties and also firms which provide election Voting Machines (EVMs) to the poll body, for the challenge.
Senior party leader Saurabh Bharadwaj had said that the party would have a “bigger and better” challenge than what was planned by the Election Commission the same day, the PTI report added. According to the report, the machine, which will be used in the entire exercise will be the same used by Bharadwaj in the Delhi Assembly last month, when he had shown how machines can be tampered with.
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The party also took a dig at the Election Commission for putting “restrictions” in the EVM challenge, the agency report added. Poll panel had announced the EVM challenge few days back, calling all political parties to try and tamper with EVMs used in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Manipur and Goa Assemble polls recently.
EC had taken this step after doubts were raised by several political parties over “reliability” of the machines. However, only CPI(M) and NCP had reponded to the Election Commission’s challenge positively, the PTI report added further.