Bhopal, December 2: The Congress has raised doubts over the security of EVMs kept in strongrooms across Madhya Pradesh after voting in the assembly elections as the state awaits counting on December 11. However, Madhya Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer V L Kantha Rao, who visited the strongroom for Bhopal district set up at the Old Jail at Arera Hills here Sunday along with Congress leaders, said the EVMs are "completely secure, safe and sealed as per the norms of the Election Commission".
Former Union minister Suresh Pachouri and some Congress candidates accompanied Rao during his visit to the strongroom. Playing down the Congress' allegations, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) accused the opposition party of running a "false propaganda" in view of its "imminent defeat" in the polls. Voting for the 230 seats in the central India state, where the Congress is trying to deny the ruling party a fourth straight term, was held on November 28. EVM Tempering Allegations in MP Assembly Elections 2018: ECI Admits CCTV Installed at Bhopal Strongroom Failed For Over an Hour.
State Congress spokesman Bhupendra Gupta Sunday alleged the basic norms of the EC are not being followed as far as the security of the EVMs in strongrooms is concerned. "There should be uninterrupted power supply in these strongrooms. But in Bhopal, LED screens installed outside the strongroom went blank on three occasions due to power interruptions. In most of the districts, even basic arrangements are not in place at the strongrooms," he alleged. Gupta demanded that representatives of the poll contestants be allowed to stay at vantage points from where gates of these strongrooms are visible.
He also demanded electronic devices not be allowed near the strongrooms.
BJP state unit president Rakesh Singh said the Congress was levelling baseless allegations against "Constitutional establishments". "The Congress is running a false propaganda over the security of the EVMs and strongrooms which is an excuse to its imminent defeat in elections. The Congress is trying to create confusion among the voters," he alleged.
"It has been the history of the Congress to attack the constitutional establishments by levelling baseless allegations," Singh said. He said the election process is controlled by the EC and no government or political party can interfere. "The Congress has now started blaming the EVMs in MP but can it clarify how it formed the government in Punjab"? he questioned.