EVM Machine Fraud: Advantage BJP in Buldhana

Published on: July 24, 2017

On pressing button against Coconut, the LED lamp against Lotus gets lighted: Election Returning Officer.

When the whole country was discussing the 'Managed' EVM Machines in the recently concluded elections, the Election Commission kept denying any fraud and a went a step further by asking parties to prove the possibilities of EVM management by organising a demo for the parties to challenge and prove the EVM management fraud. At the same time in the recently concluded elections for Buldhana Zilla Parishad in 2017, an incident came to light at the Sultanpur located polling station, where in the voter who pressed the button for the symbol of Coconut, the LED lamp of the symbol Lotus used to flash. This has been reported to the Collector by the Returning Officer in his enquiry report. This shocking information was provided to RTI Activist Anil Galgali by the Buldhana Collector's Office.

Newspapers have also carried the story though not very prominently.

RTI Activist Anil Galgali had filed a query before the Buldhana Collector's Office seeking information about the complaint of Independent candidate Smt Ashatai Arun Zore dt 20th June 2017 and also seeking details of the enquiry report filed by the Election Returning Officer. As per the information provided by the Buldhana Collector's Office's Elections department to Anil Galgali, on February 16, 2017 on the day the Election for Buldhana Zilla Parishad was underway, in a polling station 57/6 coming under Sultanpur, the candidate no 1, who was allotted the symbol of Coconut, on pressing the button before the said name and symbol of candidate no 1, the LED lamp which signifies the vote being cast for the candidate, against Candidate no 4, with symbol of Lotus used to glow.

@vinitgoenka #BJPITCell  accepts that EVM's can malfunction on the @abpmajhatv show @w_namrata @PreetiSMenon @vandanahchavan #Maha_EVMScam

The first complaint of this malfunction was made at 10 am, which was not paid cognizance of the Election Officer on duty. Further at around 1.30 pm again a few complaints poured in, on which the polling booth incharge and the Election Officer checked on the matter after obtaining consent of the polling agents belonging to all parties in the polling station. On checking into the complaint, the Election Officer Manikrao Baazad found substance on the complaints, this was further cross-checked by the booth incharge Ramnarayan Sawant who after inspection brought this to the notice of the Election Returning Officer, Lonar.

On receiving repeated complaints the Assistant Returning Officer Lonar, himself visited the polling station. The voter serial no 333 on the voting register on voting for both the ballots and on casting the vote for Zilla Parishad Election on casting the vote for a candidate , instead of the lamp against the candidate lighting up, the lamp against Candidate no 4 was glowing up, which was confirmed by the polling station Officers and the Asst Election Returning Officer.

Looking at the malfunction of the EVM Machine at the polling booth no 57/6, the polling was closed at the Sultanpur block control unit and the machine was sealed and the reserved standby unit was put in use after due verification. The report of the same was sent to the Buldhana Collector and the Dist Election Officer by the Election Returning Officer. Simultaneously a repoll in the booth was demanded and the repoll was conducted on 21st February 2017. Anil Galgali in a statement has said that the said fault was brought to notice by a voter and the it was also found to be true.

The EVM Fraud is also highlighted in the report of the Election Returning Officer and proved. To avoid such repitition in future the Election Commission should think of other alternatives and a new system to cast votes be devised instead of the EVM.