New Delhi, May 21: The Election Commission on Tuesday responded to multiple reports of EVMs being transported without security in parts of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
The poll panel has called the reports “baseless” and clarified that in all cases, the EVMs and VVPATs were sealed properly in front of parties’ candidates.
“Some polling parties arrived late. However, all EVMs were put in place in the strong room by 7 am. The strong room has been sealed in presence of general observers and candidates under CCTV surveillance,” District Election Office of Jhansi Shiv Sahay Awasthi said to ANI.
Responding to the reports from Ghazipur, the EC said there was an issue regarding candidates having a watch on the EVM strong room but the matter was resolved “by conveying the EC instructions”.
Earlier on Monday, few incidents of EVMs being transported without any security were reported in EC strong rooms in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar after the voting wrapped up for the Lok Sabha polls.
In eastern Uttar Pradesh's Ghazipur, the Bahujan Samaj Party candidate held a sit-in outside the storage room for electronic voting machines (EVMs) last night. Afzal Ansari and his supporters claim there was an attempt to take out a vehicle full of electronic voting machines.
The police, however, have denied the allegations.
Union Minister Manoj Sinha of the BJP is Afzal Ansari's opponent in Ghazipur. The protest ended after the returning officer of the district assured the protestors that arrangements are in place to have representatives of the candidates at vantage points around the EVM strongrooms and that there will be complete transparency.
A video from the Chandauli parliamentary seat in UP have surfaced which shows EVMs being off-loaded and put in a room inside the counting centre complex.
Supporters of the Samajwadi Party candidate in Chandauli, who filmed the video, questioned why the voting machines were being off-loaded two days after polling and why they were not brought in earlier.
The administration says the machines seen in the video are about 35 reserve EVM units from an assembly segment in Chandauli. Officials said these voting machines reached the storage room and the counting centre later than the other EVMs because of logistical issues.
Ghazipur and Chandauli voted on Sunday, in the final round of seven-phase election.
See senior Congress leader Rajiv Shukla who says that the common man's faith is dwindling on EVMs and asked the Election Commission to restore the faith of common man on EVMs:
News24 Bureau with Agencies
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