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Lok Sabha Elections 2019: Opposition parties ask cadres to keep strict vigil at strongrooms, counting centres

Samajwadi Party state president Naresh Uttam Patel asked the alliance candidates in all constituencies to deploy volunteers in eight-hour shifts so that they can ensure 24x7 vigilance.

lok sabha elections Updated: May 22, 2019 11:24 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
EVMs controversy,samajwadi party,bsp
A security personnel keeps guard outside sealed strong rooms where electronic voting machines (EVM) are kept, in Ahmedabad, India, May 21, 2019. (REUTERS)

After a controversy broke out over the security of EVMs in Uttar Pradesh, the opposition parties have asked their cadres to keep a tight vigil at the EVMs strong rooms across the state.

Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav, who has been questioning the use of EVMs in elections since 2014 Lok Sabha polls, asked his party members on Tuesday to remain alert on the day of counting and remain present at counting centres in large numbers.

In a letter to top office-bearers of all the district units, Akhilesh said: “All counting centre agents of the party should be extremely alert on the day.”

The SP chief asked his party workers to reach the counting centres early and directed the counting agents, who had been on the vigil when the strongrooms were locked, to remain present when the locks are opened. He asked all district and city unit presidents to hold a meeting with all counting centre agents on the eve of counting. “Those party volunteers who are near the returning officer’s computer should keep a close eye on the numbers when the EVMs data are fed in computers,” he said.

Samajwadi Party state president Naresh Uttam Patel asked the SP-BSP-RLD alliance candidates in all constituencies to deploy volunteers in eight-hour shifts so that they can ensure 24x7 vigilance. He also asked the candidates to arrange a team of counting agents, members of which already have an experience of working at a counting station. Patel also said those deployed as volunteers should be pro-active, sharp and catch any foul play.

In an appeal to its cadre, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), an ally in the gathbandhan, said the volunteers should be fully devoted towards keeping strict vigil at the strong rooms. Referring to the exit polls, the party also told the volunteers that ‘poll psychologists’ were trying to trap them so that a larger and secret game could be played.

Congress general secretary and east UP in-charge of the party, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra also issued an appeal to the party cadre and volunteers. She asked the cadre not to get unnerved by the exit polls and rumours.

“Those attempts are to damage our confidence. Under these circumstances, your alertness matters all the more. Stay put at the strong rooms and counting centres and be alert all the time and our hard work will bear fruit,” she said.

Also Read | Lok Sabha elections 2019: ‘Frivolous,’ says EC on complaints of EVM replacement in UP

First Published: May 22, 2019 11:23 IST

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