Speaking on the EVM hack claims, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Monday said that EVM has gone through many ‘agnipariksha’ and has been successful in it.

BJP leader Naqvi said, “We shouldn’t make EVM either a god or demon. EVM has gone through many ‘agnipariksha’ and has been successful in it. Earlier people used to attack it nationally and now some ‘international contract killers’ have stood up against it.”

Also Read: Rahul Gandhi backs Elon Musk’s concern on voting machine, says EVMs in India are a ‘black box

In India’s recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, several opposition leaders had alleged that EVMs (Electronic Voting Machines) could have been hacked.

In a post on X, Elon Musk had said, “We should eliminate electronic voting machines. The risk of being hacked by humans or AI, while small, is still too high.”

Also Read: EVM Row: Mumbai poll officer rejects OTP theory, defamation notice to newspaper – 10 key points

Former Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar countered Elon Musk’s criticism of EVMs and termed it a huge ‘sweeping generalisation’ even as the Tesla boss responded saying “anything can be hacked”.

He further called out Musk in a post on X, saying that India “would be happy to run a tutorial” for the same. “This is a huge sweeping generalization statement that implies no one can build secure digital hardware. Wrong. @elonmusk’s view may apply to the US n other places – where they use regular compute platforms to build Internet-connected Voting machines,” he added.

Meanwhile, a media report alleged that Mangesh Pandilkar, brother-in-law of Ravindra Waikar, who won by a margin of just 48 votes, used a mobile phone to “unlock” an EVM during vote counting.

Also Read: Elon Musk to Rahul Gandhi. Who said what on EVM ‘unlocking’ political row? 10 Points

Pandilkar and polling official Dinesh Gurav have been booked by Vanrai police under section 188 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for violating the Election Commission’s ban on mobile phones inside counting centers.

However, the Returning Officer of Mumbai North West Parliamentary Constituency dispelled reports of EVM tampering and clarified that no OTP (One-Time Password) on mobile is needed to unlock EVMs.

Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Aaditya Thackeray remarked on Sunday that the Election Commission of India lacks the courage to release the CCTV footage related to the Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Published: 17 Jun 2024, 10:19 AM IST

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