No political party likes to sit in opposition and obviously it takes time to digest defeat. With BJP cruising towards a landslide victory, BSP supremo Mayawati has accused the saffron party of rigging votes in Electronic voting machines and demanded fresh voting with ballot papers. However, Mayawati is not the first leader to expressed her doubts over transparency of EVMs.
After 2009 Lok Sabha debacle of BJP, Lal Krishna Advani raised doubts about the dependability on EVMs and demanded that ballot boxes be re-introduced. His views were backed by HRD Minister and party’s former spokesperson Prakash Javdekar who said, ” Since many technocrats have questioned credibility of software, we want ballot papares to be brought back till EC satisfies itself that EVM are tamperproof.” Another BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad had also supported Advani and said, “Since the EC itself has ordered an inquiry, they should assure everybody that EVMs are not open to manipulation and malfunctioning. But till such assurance comes, the forthcoming elections in four states should be conducted using ballot papers,” .
After party’s loss in Odisha assembly elections 2009, Congress leader and former Jammu Kashmir chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad alleged EVM tampering by BJD workers saying Congress won fewer seats there due to manipulation of EVMs by the ruling BJD.
After facing defeat in recently concluded civic polls in Maharashtra, The Congress and NCP had alleged of possible tampering and manipulations in the EVMs at 10 Municipal Corporations and 25 Zilla Parishads in the state.
BJP leader Subramanian Swamy filed a PIL in apex court claiming that EVMs were not transparent, implying that this made it possible for them to be rigged. Swamy had asked the court to direct the commission to provide a printed receipt to every voter. The SC in Oct 2013 directed Election Commission of India (EC) to generate a printed record containing the details of the vote. The bench asked the Election Commission to introduce VVPAT in EVMs in gradual stages or geographical-wise in the 2014 general elections.
EVMs were introduced in India in 1999 and replaced the entire ballot paper system in 2004 Lok Sabha polls.