Dear EC, What’s the Script? Priyanka Asks After Assam EVM ‘Theft’
The development comes after a viral video showing EVMs in what was claimed to be the car of a BJP candidate.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Varda on Friday, 2 April, slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for allegedly trying to manipulate the polls and called for a “serious re-evaluation of the use of electronic voting machines (EVM)” by all national parties.
This came after a video surfaced on social media showing EVMs, in what was claimed to be the car of a BJP candidate in Assam’s Barak Valley region late on 1 April, just hours after polling. The candidate, Krishnendu Paul, is a sitting MLA from Patharkandi.
“What is the script? The car of the Election Commission was damaged. Then a vehicle appeared there. The vehicle turned out to be one owned by a BJP candidate. The innocent Election Commission continued to ride in it. Dear EC, what is the matter? You must give the country some clarification on this,” Priyanka tweeted.
The video was first tweeted by senior Assam-based journalist Atanu Bhuyan, who also reported that the “situation was tense in Patharkandi” because of this incident.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted in Hindi, saying that not only was the EC’s car allegedly damaged, ‘the condition of democracy, too, had worsened because of the BJP’s ill-intentions’.
Assam Will Never Forgive: Congress
The Congress accused the BJP of trying to “steal the election”, with several top leaders tweeting about the incident, such as MPs Pradyut Bordoloi and Gaurav Gogoi, the party’s in-charge for Assam Jitendra Singh and senior leader Rakibul Hussain.
Assam Congress chief Ripun Bora has even threatened to boycott the elections “if the open loot and rigging of EVMs doesn’t stop immediately”.
News agency ANI put out two tweets attributing it to ‘sources’, presumably in the Election Commission, claiming that the EC officials’ car transporting a polled EVM had broken down and they took a lift from another vehicle which later turned out to be that of Paul.
The EC is yet to officially issue a response as is Paul. Paul’s mobile phone was also found to be switched off.
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