Kejriwal alleges major EVM tampering in Punjab

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EVM tampering may have led to AAP’s poor showing in Punjab, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday alleged, saying around 20 to 25 per cent of its votes may have been “transferred” to the SAD-BJP coalition.

AAP’s poor tally of 20 seats is “beyond understanding” and raises a “big question mark” on the reliability of electronic voting machines (EVMs) as political pundits across the spectrum had “predicted a landslide” for the party, he told a press conference here.

“How did the Akalis get 30 per cent vote share when an AAP sweep was a foregone conclusion? No one said Congress will perform so well and it got a two-third majority. We suspect that 20-25 per cent of AAP votes may have been transferred to SAD-BJP through EVM tampering,” he said.

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It was Kejriwal’s first media interaction after March 11, the day the Punjab Assembly poll results were declared. The AAP national convenor, however, did not refer to Goa where the party drew a blank.

Yesterday, he had written to the Delhi chief secretary directing him to approach the state election commission with the request to hold the upcoming municipal polls in Delhi using ballot papers.

Kejriwal demanded that the votes registered in EVMs (electronic voting machines) be compared with the VVPAT trail in around 32 places in Punjab where the the paper audit system was in place.

“It is about the credibility of the Election Commission and the faith of people in the electoral system. We have strong prima facie evidence of foul play,” he said.

Asked what explains AAP’s stunning victory in 2015 polls, Kejriwal said that may have got to do with BJP’s “over- confidence” that it would clinch a victory.

“So they may not have indulged in tampering. The same would explain the victory of JD(U)-RJD in Bihar. Even then BJP was very sure of winning the state,” he said.

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