EC to conduct random audit of electoral rolls in State

Terms recent hacking claim of EVMs in London a ‘circus’
Amidst Opposition parties often raising doubts over the credibility of the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs), Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora on Tuesday said “most parties” had reposed their faith in them but some sections made it a part of “motivated slugfest”. Calling the purported hacking of the EVMs recently as the “circus in London,” he said an FIR had already been filed against the person who claimed to be a former employee of the ECIL but in fact was not. The British Union of Journalists and the Indian Union of Journalists who were supposed to have organised the event had dissociated themselves with it. “It is not possible to manipulate the EVMs. It is definitely foolproof as far as apprehensions of conspiracy and manipulation are concerned. But technical snags are possible as in case of any other device,” he said at a press conference. During his two-day visit, he met representatives of political parties and officials as part of the election preparedness exercise. Referring to the many complaints from political parties including the one by YSRCP president Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy on deletion of voters, the CEC said a team of officials would visit AP in the next few days to conduct a random audit of electoral rolls. “The State Chief Electoral Officer will look into all complaints and take action.” Some political parties asked for counting of more VVPAT slips. The group of experts from the Indian Statistical Organisation and the National Sample Survey Organisation would submit its report soon on the possibility. It would suggest a formula for counting the slips, he said. Mr. Arora said conducting the elections to the Lok Sabha and the AP Assembly was “doubly challenging and a formidable task”. Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa and officials of the ECI, CEO Gopal Krishna Dwivedi were present.

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