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Direct EC to fix mismatch before declaring results: PIL

The PIL claimed that research showed discrepancies in EC’s voter turnout data and votes counted. The discrepancies ranged between 1% to 10% and amounted to 7,39,104 votes. The petition claimed that it wasn’t questioning the results but wanted EC t...

, ET Bureau|
Nov 21, 2019, 09.33 AM IST
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The petition said that electronic voting machines were vulnerable to ‘malicious changes’ by insiders such as designers, programmers, manufacturers and maintenance technicians but EC has been dismissive of such doubts on the manner in which votes were counted and results declared.
NEW DELHI: The Association for Democratic Reforms and Common Cause have jointly filed a public interest litigation challenging what they called were vote discrepancies in 347 Lok Sabha constituencies in the 2019 polls. They demanded that the Supreme Court direct the election commission to hereafter declare results only after verification if such discrepancies.

The PIL claimed that research showed discrepancies in EC’s voter turnout data and votes counted. The discrepancies ranged between 1% to 10% and amounted to 7,39,104 votes. There were 6 seats where the discrepancies were higher than the winning margin, the petition, filed through lawyer Neha Rathi, said. The petition said that electronic voting machines were vulnerable to ‘malicious changes’ by insiders such as designers, programmers, manufacturers and maintenance technicians but EC has been dismissive of such doubts on the manner in which votes were counted and results declared. The petition claimed that it wasn’t questioning the results but wanted EC to evolve a protocol and handle such situations in a transparent way.

“If citizens do not trust results, and there is no basis to show that their fears are unfounded, legitimacy of election results would remain perpetually under a cloud,” the PIL said. The current system of declaring results before authenticated data is released raises a very important question on whether the people’s mandate is being truly represented, it said. “The present system raises massive confusion and potential arbitrariness. The infirmities in the existing system is far more serious and an alarming trend and cannot be disregarded. That such a protocol is likely to create suspicion, confusion, conflict and a very discredited electoral process,” the petition alleged.

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