Congress wants ballot paper in local body polls, BJP asks if it is ‘scared’ | dehradun | Hindustan Times
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Congress wants ballot paper in local body polls, BJP asks if it is ‘scared’

Congress corporators approached the state election commission, demanding that EVMs be completely kept away from the upcoming local body polls in Uttarakhand

dehradun Updated: Nov 25, 2017 20:16 IST
Neha Pant
Neha Pant
Hindustan Times
Urban local body elections,ULB polls,electronic voting machines
ULB polls are scheduled to be held in Uttarakhand by April next year. The previous civic polls were held in 2013 through the EVMs at some ULBs and ballot papers at most others.(HT File)

The Uttarakhand Congress’ demand for holding urban local body (ULB) polls in the state via ballot papers over fears of the electronic voting machines (EVMs) being allegedly ‘tampered’ has invited jibes from the ruling BJP.

Amid allegations of EVMs being tampered in the assembly polls earlier this year and then during the ongoing ULB polls in neighboring Uttar Pradesh, Congress corporators have approached the state election commission, demanding that EVMs be completely kept away from the upcoming local body polls in Uttarakhand.

“Given how it has been shrouded in controversies, it is better to keep away from using EVMs for local body polls. They should instead be held through ballot papers for ensuring total transparency,” said Rajkumar, former Rajpur Road lawmaker who led the delegation of Congress leaders.

ULB polls are scheduled to be held in Uttarakhand by April next year. The previous civic polls were held in 2013 through the EVMs at some ULBs and ballot papers at most others.

The BJP, however, lashed out at the Congress, saying that it was “scared” of the ruling party’s popularity and hence the demand. “They’re so scared of us that perhaps in their minds they already know they’re going to lose. Tampering of EVMs has not been proved yet and their demand only goes on to show their defeatist outlook,” BJP’s state media in-charge Devendra Bhasin said.

It may be recalled that soon after the assembly elections earlier this year, various parties including the BSP, Congress and Aam Aadmi Party had alleged “large-scale tampering of the EVMs in favor of the BJP”. After the controversy, the Election Commission of India had clarified that it was not possible to tamper with EVMs, and even held a ‘hackathon’ challenging parties to prove their claims.

There are 92 ULBs in Uttarakhand at present, including six municipal corporations, 43 municipal boards and an equal number of town panchayats.

First Published: Nov 25, 2017 20:15 IST