In the wake of Aam Aadmi Party’s attempt to ‘prove’ EVM tampering in the Delhi Assembly on Tuesday, the Election Commission of India has said that the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) cannot be tampered with. AAP MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj, who is an engineer by training, tried to demonstrate how the polling machines can be tampered with.
Several media reports on Tuesday also said that the EC would organize an EVM hackathon, inviting representatives of all national and regional parties to prove the poll machines could be hacked. HT reported EC sources as saying that the poll panel would decide the date of the hackathon after an all-party meet on May 12.
However, no formal statement has been issued by the EC about the reported hackathon. But the EC did blow up AAP’s tampering claims in an official press release.
Here’s what the EC actually said on AAP’s EVM tampering claims:
- The Election Commission, through media, has learnt about a so-called demonstration of tampering of ‘look-alike’ EVM. In this context it should be understood that it is possible for anyone to make any electronic gadget which ‘looks-like’ ECI EVM and demonstrate any Magic or Tampering.
- Very simply put, any ‘look-alike’ machine is just a different gadget, which is manifestly designed and made to function in a ‘tampered’ manner and has no relevance, incidence or bearing on the Commission’s EVMs.
- It is common sense that gadgets other than ECI EVMs can be programmed to perform in a pre-determined way, but it simply cannot be implied that ECI EVMs will behave in the same manner because the ECI EVMs are Technically Secured and function under an elaborate Administrative and Security Protocol.
- Such so-called demonstration on extraneous and duplicate gadgets which are not owned by the ECI cannot be exploited to influence our Intelligent Citizens & Electorate to assail or vilify the EVMs used by the Commission in its electoral process.
- Election Commission of India (ECI) has scheduled an All Political Parties meeting on 12th May 2017 for EVM Issues and other Electoral Reforms.