EVM hacking claim: Centre alleges Congress organised hackathon in London, opposition says switch back to ballot box

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Updated: Jan 22, 2019, 02:27 PM(IST)

File photo of Ravi Shankar Prasad Photograph:( Zee News Network )

Story highlights

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad stated that the cyber expert's claim will be exposed, adding that the Congress insulted the 2014 mandate.

Amid claims by an Indian cyber expert that electronic voting machines (EVMs) can be hacked, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad Tuesday reacted to the row. The Union Minister alleged that the Congress had organised the EVM hackathon in London in which the cyber expert claimed that the 2014 general elections were rigged.

The event was sponsored by the Congress, the minister of Electronics and IT said at a press conference in New Delhi today. 

Prasad stated that the cyber expert's claim will be exposed, adding that the Congress insulted the 2014 mandate.

The Election Commission of India on Monday stated that it firmly stands by "empirical facts about foolproof nature" of its machines and said it is examining as to what legal action "can and should" be taken in the matter, news agency PTI reported. 

Meanwhile, political leaders from across the country have reacted to the report. Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu stated the Commission must go back to using ballot box system for the upcoming general elections. 

BSP president and SP chief, Mayawati and Akhilesh Yadav, also spoke in favour of a strict probe into the matter.  

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"Keeping democracy's larger interest in view, essential to look into EVM matter so that it gets resolved soon. It's possible to validate ballot paper but it's not the case with EVM. We demand EC to hold 2019 general election using ballot paper, taking this into cognizance," Mayawati told reporters on Tuesday. 

"If someone has raised a question then it must be thought that what is the reason that a developed country like Japan is not using EVMs. It is not a question of a political party, it's a question of trust in democracy. EC & govt should make a decision," Akhilesh Yadav noted. 

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An Indian cyber expert, seeking political asylum in the US, Monday claimed the 2014 general election was "rigged" through the electronic voting machines, which, he said can be hacked.

Addressing a press conference in London via Skype, the man, identified as Syed Shuja, said he fled India in 2014 because he felt threatened in the country after the killing of some of his team members, news agency PTI reported. 

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