The Aam Aadmi Party on Tuesday gave a point-by-point “demonstration” on ways to rig an “electronic voting machine” during the one-day special session of the Delhi assembly, and said the EVMs are “threat to the democracy”.
The “demonstration” on EVM-tampering was made by party’s Greater Kailash MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj inside the assembly who claimed there is “no machine in the world that cannot be rigged”.
The AAP MLA also claimed the party can hack all EVMs, to be used in the Gujarat assembly polls, within three hours and can ensure the Bharatiya Janata Party does not win even a single booth, let alone a seat.
Bhardwaj, who was a software engineer before joining politics, said it takes “90 seconds” to change the motherboard of EVMs and that all votes can be polled in favour of a particular political party.
The “demonstration” on EVMs won’t attract legal action as legislators enjoy legal immunity inside House.
The “electronic voting machines” Bhardwaj made the demonstration on was a prototype assembled by a group of IITians, AAP sources said.
The AAP’s attempt to whip up the issue comes at a time when it is in the eye of a political storm after its sacked minister Kapil Mishra’s’ allegations of corruption against Kejriwal and minister Satyendar Jain.
Social activist V V Rao, Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Manoj Jha, Communist Party of India-Marxist Nilotpal Basu, leaders of Trinamul Congress were present on the gallery of the House when Bhardwaj staged the demo.
“Hackers can use simple codes of EVMs to make any candidate win. This can be done by changing motherboard of the the EVM. With this code, anyone can change the result of votes for that particular machines.
“I tell you that an EVM can also be reset to show how the machine that can pass the test on a polling day can be tweaked during the voting process,” the Bhardwaj told the House.
The 38-year-old legislator, who claimed he has worked with multi-national companies in his career, said he was not making baseless allegations on EVM manipulation.
“With this demonstration, it has been proved that how EVMs can be hacked…EVMs manipulation is a very serious issue. It is threat to the democracy of the country. There is no machine in the world, which cannot be hacked,” he said.
During the demonstration, Bhardwaj showed that how votes polled in favour of AAP can be transfered to the BJP.
According to Bhardwaj, of 10 votes polled in favour of AAP during the demonstration eight went to the BJP.
“I have an experience of 10 years in technology and engineering, and I had quit in 2013,” the AAP MLA said at the begning of his “tampering master demonstration”.
Bhardwaj said that despite the four-year gap, he can show the people exactly how an EVM can be hacked.
“EVM tampering is a very serious issue because several freedom fighters had sacrificed their lives for the freedom of this country. EVMs, which were given up by several countries, are now being used in our country,” Bhardwaj said.
Using the analogy of cricket match-fixing, the AAP MLA said people earlier would not believe this can be done but they had to believe eventually.
“People are making fun of us today. But I want to tell that EVM manipulation is a bitter truth which sooner or later have to be accepted,” he said.
Bharadwaj explained the two units into which the machine is divided. He then exhibited a small voting procedure.
He explained how each voter comes and presses the button opposite to the party symbol which he wants to vote for.
Bharadwaj then explained that a party candidate, posing himself as the voter, comes and enters the secret code. Once the code is entered, all the votes go in favour of that party.
“There are two units — control unit (which collects votes) and second ballot unit (the buttons which we press representing parties). This trust is the foundation of democracy of India. I want to show you that the foundation of democracy which is thrusted in this machine is something which I (a simple engineer) have been able to manipulate in 10-15 days. I will prove this in front of the assembly,” he added.
“The control unit is with the presiding officer and the ballot is in the box where the voter goes and press button,” he added.
Bharadwaj undertook a small voting procedure by giving two votes each to every party — the AAP, the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Indian National Congress and the Samajwadi Party.
He then pressed the secret code and then gave another eight votes, all to the AAP. As per the votes, the maximum votes should have gone to AAP but the results were shocking.
Only two votes went to the AAP while the BJP got 11 votes. The Congress, the BSP, the SP got two votes each.
Bharadwaj further said that the secret code is easy to enter as the ballot unit is covered by a cardboard box and therefore only the voter can see inside it.
Bharadwaj also condemned the enquiry report of the Election Commission of India saying that it had no basis.
“I read the entire finding. There is no basis in that finding. It is shameful that it is the enquiry report of our EC.”
He further gave examples of Bhind and Dholpur where EVM were rigged and results were manipulated.
“I read the Election Commission’s site. I read many answers given by them. And we all saw on TV that how in Bhind, infront of journalists, DM, and candidates, any button which was pressed was showing only BJP’s ticket. Thankfully VVPAT was connected with it.”
With inputs from ANI