Sunday, 25 June, 2017

EC begins EVM challenge; only 2 parties present

EVM open challenge Uttarakhand HC terms EC's EVM challenge unconstitutional, AAP to conduct its own on Saturday
Carlton Santiago | 04 June, 2017, 06:43

The participants will have four hours to demonstrate that the EVMs provided to them have been tampered with, he said.

"NCP and CPM had informed they don't want to participate in any challenge but were only interested to participate in an academic exercise".

ECI said that NCP has raised their doubts with EVMs used during municipal elections in Maharashtra.

While each participating party can use a maximum of four EVMs for the challenge, sources in the commission said extra machines were also kept as back up keeping in mind any eventuality.

"There are over a dozen methods available to hack EVMs but one can not hack an EVM under the EC's guidelines".

Referring to the EC's earlier letter inviting all parties for the challenge, Reddy said that the communication had sought cooperation in strengthening the electoral process so as to make it more transparent, participative and credible. "The National and State Recognized Political Parties and other social organizations should have waited for the outcome of election petitions pending in this Court as well as in other High Courts, wherein, the challenge has been laid to the functioning of EVMs".

The Election Commission today held the EVM hacking challenge, starting with a detailed demonstration on the various security checks in the machine.

The Commission has brought 14 EVMs for the Saturday's challenge from its strong rooms in northern states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Uttarakhand, where local elections were held recently. The challenge will go on for almost four hours and both the political parties will take it on simultaneously in two different halls.

According to ECI insiders, the CPM team had three IT experts, while the NCP team comprised of two IT experts and an MP. Mr Zaidi reiterated that the EVM machines are non tamperable. The BSP was the first to complain, with Mayawati alleging that largescale EVM tampering was behind the BJP sweep in UP.

The EVM challenge has been organised by the Commission to clear the doubts of non-NDA opposition political parties who had alleged EVM manipulation. The Election Commission had called this machine a "look-alike" and not an "ECI-EVM".

AAP had opted out of Saturday's challenge after the EC did not accept the party's request to change the motherboard of the machines to demonstrate hacking. Zaidi, however, refused to comment on the announcement.

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