Dear Opposition: Blaming EVM should stop now. It’s time to accept defeat gracefully | God of Small Thing

This year, the elections were nothing less than a marathon. It was worthwhile though. The results are out. As expected, the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) will continue reigning the country. The citizens of India have chosen the government with a strong mandate. A clean and good governance image helped them sail the sea better.

Politicians on EVM Hacking
Opposition blaming EVM: Politicians on EVM Hacking. Image Credits:

As usual, the oppositions have been blaming the electronic voting machine (EVM). This isn’t unusual, was expected by everyone. The EC put in a lot of efforts and planning to ensure that the integrity of the election process is maintained. Despite repeated demands to hold elections with a ballot paper, the EC remained firm.

Here are the steps were taken by the Election Commission to ensure that the EVM Remains Tamper- Proof.

Evm Hacking
EVM Hacking. Image Credits: India Today

They had set Standard operating procedures (SOP), which was well documented. And, it was mandatory for each Returning Officer (RO) to follow them.
To maintain transparency, these SOPs were codified by Election Commission of India (ECI).

Blaming EVM should stop. Here’s why:

1. Allotment of EVMs was done through randomization in the presence of political parties.
2. The first round was done to randomly assign EVMs and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trails (VVPATs) to the assembly segment.
3. List of randomized EVMs and VVPATs were given to all the recognized political parties.
4. After the Randomisation, the EVMs and VVPATs were guarded and taken to Returning Officer’s room under properly armed police force.
5. At the time of sealing, representatives of parties were present. The entry point of rooms having EVMs had CCTV installed.

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steps were taken by the Election Commission to ensure that the EVM Remains Tamper- Proof.
steps taken by the Election Commission to ensure that the EVM Remains Tamper- Proof. Image Credits: Moneycontrol

6. The second randomization is done to assign EVMs and VVPATs to polling stations.
7. A list of EVMs, VVPATs, and reserve machines were given to the candidates.
8. Before sending machines to polling stations, a mock poll was conducted to randomly select the EVMs and VVPATs. This was done by polling agents.
9. On the D-day, rooms were opened in the presence of political parties.

10. Before the actual poll, the mock poll was conducted to check the machines and the data was cleared after that.
11. After polling, EVMs and VVPATs were brought back to the room. And, kept them under CCTV surveillance and police protection.
12. On the counting day, rooms were opened in the presence of polling agents.
13. Polling agents verified machine whereabouts, seals and tags.
14. Then, polling agents counted the vote, tally the number of votes in EVMs with the number of votes cast at each polling station.

steps taken by the Election Commission to ensure that the EVM Remains Tamper- Proof
steps taken by the Election Commission to ensure that the EVM Remains Tamper- Proof. Image Credits:
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15. The moving process of EVMs ad VVPATs was done through EVM tracking software (ETS). Political parties were informed in advance.
16. Finally, the Supreme Court allowed tallying votes in five EVMs with VVPATs per assembly segment.

By looking at the methods they applied during the time of the election, it is quite impossible to hack the system. These are some cheap tactics of Congress to blame the EVM. Their loss has nothing to do with the EVM.

They couldn’t satisfy the electorates. They were lacking political imagination. This had to happen.

EVM Hacking
EVM Hacking. Image Credits: India Today

What happened to EVM Hacking during state elections?

The opposition thought that EVM tampering was vague when they were consecutively winning the elections. Nobody blamed the EVMs after the legislative assembly poll results. BJP on the other hand, never criticized the process even when they lost with huge margins. AAP winning 67 seats in Delhi was an example of that.

Criticizing the environmental factors and questioning the integrity of the process is incorrect. This spoils India’s image in the entire world as we are the largest democracy in the world. Millions of employees toll hard and even risk their lives to ensure that we exercise our right to vote freely and fairly. By questioning the process we are indirectly demeaning everybody who worked hard for it.

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Anjali Kochhar

Anjali has worked with The Economic Times and FICCI and is into content development for 3 years. She is experienced in various genres of writing including lifestyle, political, social, and entertainment.

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