NR constituency candidates allege tampering of EVMs

May 18, 2018

MYSURU: Voicing his suspicions over the credibility of Congress’ Tanveer Sait’s victory from Narasimharaja (NR) constituency in the city, BJP’s candidate from the constituency S Satheesh aka Sandesh Swamy, alleged that the former minister had hired hackers to rig the Electronic Voting Machines(EVMs).
Swamy said that a group of hackers had met with leaders of all political parties, offering to hack the EVMs. “While other candidates snubbed them, Sait agreed to take their help to emerge victorious,” he added.

Alleging that Sait had used dubious measures to add names illegally to the electoral rolls, Swamy said, “Around 50,000 names were added to the voters’ list for this election. There were 2,11,549 voters in the constituency in 2013, but the number rose to 2,61,402 just before the election. We brought this issue to the attention of the Election Commission, but it was not investigated. We want the EC to look into issues pertaining to the electoral rolls, and hacking of EVMs.”

Swamy opined that there was little chance of Sait polling 62,000 votes in the constituency. “We could sense an anti-Tanveer wave wherever we went out to campaign and people accused him of failing to develop the constituency. Along with his supporters, he is alleged to have even attacked a journalist. How can he secure as many votes despite all this?” Swamy asked.

Echoing these suspicions, Abdul Azeez, who contested the elections as a JD(S) candidate from the constituency, said that a hacker, Venkatesh had approached him, and offered to rig the EVMs in his favour. “The team demanded Rs 5 crore, but I was busy with the campaign and did not pay any heed. But, when the results were announced, I was astonished to see my vote share,” Azeez said.

Azeezs said that he had tried to trace Venkatesh with the help of his supporters, and hand him over to NR police.

Meanwhile, Congress leader MK Somashekar, who lost the Krishnaraja seat to SA Ramadas, too alleged tampering of EVMs. “A team of four people are said to have hacked EVMs in NR and KR constituencies. I am beginning to doubt the entire election process in the light of these developments,” Somashekar said.

However, Mysuru deputy commissioner Abiram Shankar dismissed these allegations. “It is impossible to hack EVMs and the VVPAT machines. These allegations are unfounded,” he said.

City police commissioner A Subramanyeshwar Rao said, “These candidates appear to be making these allegations since they have lost the elections. No case has been registered and nobody has been arrested or taken into custory.”