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Debabrata Saikia casts doubt over “unused EVMs”, asks EC to keep watch

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Guwahati, April 30, 2019:

Leader of opposition, Debabrata Saikia has written to the Chief Election Commissioner complaining that the Assam EVM machines, as “unused” machines are reportedly being transported from one district to another.

In the letter, Saikia stated that on the evening of 28 April, it was reported that EVM machines were being transported to a private godown at Amingaon opposite to the Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Kamrup (Rural), which is adjacent to the strong room, thereby, creating doubt among the public in Assam.

As per practice, the unused EVMs were transferred only after the same is verified by representatives of all political parties as done when the same is received and made ready for use before polls. But it is reported that the contesting candidates have not undertaken such exercises, Saikia added in his letter.

Besides, the CEOs have to personally monitor the transfer of “unused EVMs” and ensure the compliance of instruction by the field level officers in its letter and spirit and also ensure that each unused EVM is reported to the Commission. This has caused confusion without undermining ulterior and suspicious motive of the Election Commission in such unnecessary transportation, which has been done without any intimation to political parties, in secrecy.

The Congress leader has requested the Chief Election Commissioner to immediately intervene and instruct the Chief Election Officer (CEO) and District Election Officer (DEO) in Assam not to shift any EVM machines from present locations till the final counting is done in order to avoid any confusion in the greater interest of the people of Assam.

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