Allow scrutiny of EVMs, Karnataka minister Kharge tells EC

Allow scrutiny of EVMs, Karnataka minister Kharge tells EC

A Karnataka minister today alleged that the Election Commission of India has been reduced to "a puppet" at the Centre's hands and emphasised that it should pave way for public scrutiny of EVMs.  

 The Congress government in Karnataka is writing to the election commission with suggestions on electronic voting machines, state minister for information technology and tourism Priyank Kharge said.

However, the  ball is in the court of the election commission whether to agree  or not, he said.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an event here, the minister said, "We are ready for our suggestions and even experiments. But the moot question is whether the   election commission is ready."

He said the election commission has to agree with the state's proposal first.

"The election commission has been reduced to a puppet at the hands of the Union government. Even, the Centre has to agree  with it (the proposal)," the minister said.

Kharge said the EC can make use of the techies and experts in Karnataka to test the EVMs.

He clarified that he is raising the matter, not because  of upcoming Karnataka assembly polls but because EVMs are used from  the panchayat level to Lok Sabha polls.  

Kharge referred to reports claiming that a candidate contesting the municipal elections in Uttar Pradesh could not get his own votes.

He said Patidar agitation leader Hardik Patel in Gujarat too had expressed reservation on the EVMs.  

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