New Delhi/Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], Apr. 11 : Slamming the Congress Party for having raised doubts over the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and conveying the same to the Election Commission of India (ECI), the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday said this is only a way to justify the grand old party's defeat.
BJP leader Rahul Sinha said the Congress' defeat is public's response for deceiving the nation. "The Congress and opposition will lose in both, be it EVM system or ballot. Nothing can save them from losing. When they were in power, they didn't find anything wrong in EVMs. Now all of a sudden, on losing, they have found faults in it. They welcomes when the voting system changed from ballot to EVM. Now, when they couldn't find anything, they started putting blame on EVM," Sinha told ANI. Meanwhile, taking a different stand from the BJP's, Communist Party of India (CPI) leader D. Raja said that more than fifteen parties met the Election Commission and gave memorandum that there is loss of faith in EVMs and the faith in electoral system has to be restored for which there should be a transparent, credible mechanism to exercise vote by citizens.
"It is citizens who are losing confidence in EVMs. The Supreme Court in 2013 was also referred where it had suggested there should be proper trail which should be indispensable.
The EC should take note. Even SC has doubts over the tampering of EVMs. It is time the EC takes this issue seriously and adopts credible mechanism, which we suggested of going back to ballot system.
The political parties also suggested to have an all-party meeting if EC thinks there is need for further consultation.
The EC also said we should discuss this collaboratively," he added. Citing examples of the other countries like Japan, Germany whose technology is far more advanced than India, the Congress yesterday emphasized on using ballot paper scrutiny instead of using electronic system while stating that we have faith in the poll panel but not on the EVMs.
"We have all referred to the global best practices where overwhelming majority of democracies in the world are not using electronic voting system.
The country from where the chip is coming, Japan is itself not using the EVMs. There were only eight countries in Europe which opted for electronic machines and six have fallen back including Germany where the Supreme Court has come out with the strong indictment," Congress leader Anand Sharma said.
Accusing the Central Government of tampering with the EVMs, Sharma said this government has refused to give the money for verifiable paper trail that raises a fundamental question about the intent of the BJP government.
Resonating similar views, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Majeed Memom said all leaders of the opposition party leaders are unanimously addressing the commission with regard to the lack of faith in EVM functioning.
"The EC has heard each political party and the grievances were unanimous. Now, the Election Commission has assured us before winding up that all party meeting will be convened soon and they will seriously examine our grievances against the electronic system," Memom told ANI.
In the meeting with Election Commission yesterday, a team of top opposition leaders put forward their demand before the poll panel of using ballot papers instead of EVMs in the upcoming elections in view of the alleged tampering.
Among those present at today's strategy meeting held at Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad's chamber in Parliament included Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Anand Sharma, Kapil Sibal and Vivek Tankha, besides Janata Dal (United) leader Ali Anwar Ansari, Trinamool Congress leader Sukhendu Sekhar Roy, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) leader Satish Misra and Samajwadi Party leader Neeraj Shekhar.
Memon, Raja and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader J.P. Narain Yadav were also present during the meeting and all strongly raised the issue with the ECI..