India

CEC Sunil Arora: 'EVM can malfunction like any other machine but can't be tampered with'

CEC Sunil Arora: 'EVM can malfunction like any other machine but can't be tampered with'

VOTING BY ballot was history and the Assembly elections in the state will be held through electronic voting machines (EVM), said Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora on Wednesday.

“The ballot paper is history now and that may not be possible. The EVM cannot be tampered with. It can malfunction like any other machine but it cannot be tampered with. It’s a standalone machine,” said Arora, while interacting with the media, on the demand of some political parties to conduct the polls through voting on ballot paper.

As part of reviewing the preparedness for the Assembly polls, the Election Commission (EC) held meetings with political parties, district magistrates and superintendents of police, central regulatory agencies like income tax and excise and then also held meetings with the chief secretary, home secretary, director general of police along with other senior officials on Wednesday.

The CEC further said the Model Code of Conduct will soon be announced in Delhi. “In any case, while deciding the dates, the commission does take into account different factors such as school holidays, examinations and important festivals. At the same time, the major factor for the commission is the movement of the central forces from one place to another,” said Arora on the issue of Diwali, which will be observed next month.

He further said the central armed forces will be deployed adequately, according to availability and in more numbers at Left-wing extremist areas. On the issue of duplication of names in the electoral rolls, Arora said it was an ongoing process. “On a specific complaint, the chief electoral officer was asked to probe and submit a report,” he said, adding that more than 5,300 polling stations were moved to the ground floor to facilitate senior citizens and disabled people.