Reading the tea leaves: Chandrababu Naidu cites risk of EVM manipulation, asks EC to resolve issues

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New Delhi | Published: May 20, 2019 4:53:48 PM

Many opposition parties have in the past raised doubts on the efficacy of EVMs.

Chandrababu Naidu, lok sabha elections, lok sabha elections 2019Chandrababu Naidu (ANI)

With just three days left for results of Lok Sabha polls to be declared, Andhra Pradesh chief minister and TDP leader N Chandrababu asked the Election Commission to sort out a number of problems related to the counting process. Voicing concerns, the CM referred to a number of rumours doing the rounds as far as polling machines are concerned.

“There are many problems in the counting process. The Election Commission should take steps to resolve all those problems. There are many rumours regarding EVMs, including that printers may be manipulated and that control panels will be changed. The poll body has given scope for suspicion,” ANI quoted her as saying.

Chandrababu Naidu’s concerns are not alone. Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party has also raised similar concerns Senior party leader Sanjay Singh has suggested that elections should be stand cancelled id any mismarch is found in votecount between EVMs and VVPAT

Many opposition parties have in the past raised doubts on the efficacy of EVMs and have often called for a return to a system of voting through paper ballots. Several of these parties have alleged that the BJP has managed to rig elections through EVM manipulation. The Election Commission, however, has maintained that EVMs are tamper-proof and ruled out return to paper ballots. The BJP too has charged the Opposition of resorting to cheap tactics to discredit the mandate of the people.

Naidu had recently moved the Supreme Court in this matter. In a big blow to Opposition parties, top court rejected their plea seeking 50 percent of VVPATs be counted during during results. After this setback, Naidu had said the opposition leaders were planning to go to EC with their petition.

Meanwhile, Naidu is scheduled to meet his West Bengal counterpart and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee today, a day after meeting Congress president Rahul Gandhi and his mother Sonia Gandhi, who is UPA chairperson.

Also read: Exit Polls: Naveen Patnaik set for fifth term as CM, but BJP may win more Lok Sabha seats

He will meet Mamata Banerjee in his efforts to unite the opposition parties against the BJP before Lok Sabha election results are declared on May 23. “Naidu will hold a meeting with Mamata Banerjee at West Bengal secretariat this afternoon. Both will hold talks on the strategies of the ‘mahagathbandhan’ (grand alliance),” Indian Express quoted a source as saying.

During his meeting with West Bengal CM, he may also brief her about his meetings with other political leaders in the national capital that happened in the last couple of days. The exit polls that were announced yesterday predicted the return of NDA government at the Centre

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