The Election Commission had released several versions of the voter data and several have questioned if the EVMs were switched or manipulated. Jan Andolan in Delhi has launched a campaign, ‘EVM Virodhi Rashtriya Jan Andolan’ against the use of Electronic Voting Machines for elections in India.
“We appeal to all political parties to urgently recognise the threats posed by the manipulations of EVM that compromise a free and fair election. We urge you to initiate immediate measures for public awareness regarding possible manipulation by EVM,” read the campaign statement.
It asks political parties to recognise the threat to Indian democracy being posed by the use of EVMs. “The depth and scale of BJP victories in the Hindi heartland states and the total elimination of major opponents should raise alarm bells about the real possibility of EVM tampering,” says the campaigners. EVM tampering can manufacture a distorted political narrative, demoralise the opponents and derail united strategies.
The ECI has said several times that the software used in EVMs is One Time Programmable (OTP), and thus cannot be rewritten and tampered with. “The ECI has also consistently claimed that unlike machines in Europe for instance, EVMs in India are stand-alone devices unconnected to the Internet. This lack of internet connectivity in the use of Indian EVMs has been highlighted time and again to suggest that EVMs cannot be hacked because they cannot be remotely controlled via the internet. We now know that these claims no longer stand up to strict scrutiny. A response to a Right to Information (RTI) query tells us that the software in EVMs is not OTP and can indeed be rewritten,” highlights the statement.
The campaigners have appealed to all political parties to urgently recognise the threats posed by the manipulations of EVM that compromise a free and fair election. They have requested all political parties to initiate immediate measures for public awareness regarding possible manipulation by EVM. We also request you to move forward to reject EVM and revert back to paper ballot, and if necessary to boycott election to press forward this demand
Here is the full statement: