New Delhi: The Election Commission has sought a detailed report from the district poll authorities in Bhind, Madhya Pradesh on media reports that VVPAT was only dispensing slips of BJP symbol during a demonstration exercise. An Assembly bypoll is due in Bhind next week and the demonstration was part of the familiarisation exercise.
“We have sought a detailed report from district election officer and would come up with a response in the evening,” a Commission spokesperson said. The voters see Voter-verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) slip for seven seconds, which would be an acknowledgement receipt for the party they voted for in the election.
VVPAT is a machine which dispenses a slip with the symbol of the party for which a person has voted for. The slip drops in a box but the voter cannot take it home.
Congress leaders alleged that the paper trail attached to the EVM generated a receipt with the BJP’s lotus symbol when chief electoral officer Saleena Singh had pressed the button for the Samajwadi Party candidate during the demonstration process. media reports too said that the receipt showed the vote going to BJP, irrespective of button pressed, during the demonstration.The reports also claimed that Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Madhya Pradesh, Saleena Singh was seen telling journalists that the news should not appear in newspapers, else they would be detained at the police station
However, Singh denied the allegations. “When you have a fully calibrated machine, this cannot happen like this,” she told Hindustan Times. “But they [journalists] misrepresented the facts without trying to understand the whole issue.”
The video of the incident had gone viral on social media. In the video, Singh is seen telling journalists to refrain from reporting the incident or face police action.