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Lok Sabha Elections 2024 | Mumbai cops deny media report on EVM 'unlocking' by kin of newly-elected MP

Earlier in the day, Mumbai North West Lok Sabha constituency returning officer Vandana Suryavanshi held a press conference to refute the news report.
Last Updated : 16 June 2024, 16:55 IST

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Mumbai: A Mumbai police official on Sunday said a media report about the kin of a newly-elected MP using a mobile phone to "unlock" an EVM on Lok Sabha election counting day was fake and baseless.

The paper had claimed Mangesh Pandilkar, the brother-in-law of Mumbai North West MP Ravindra Waikar, who won the seat with a wafer thin margin of 48 votes, used a mobile phone inside the counting centre in Nesco in Goregaon to "generate an OTP that unlocked the EVM".

"The news report is fake and baseless. No such information (about mobile phone being used to generate OTP to unlock EVM) was given by any official," the Vanrai police station official said.

Vanrai police had booked Pandilkar, brother-in-law of Waikar, under Indian Penal Code section 188 (disobeying official order) on Wednesday for allegedly using a mobile phone at a counting centre in Goregaon on June 4, when results of the general elections were announced.

Polling official from Jogeshwari assembly constituency Dinesh Gurav, whose mobile phone was found in the possession of an unauthorised individual on counting day, was also booked by police.

Earlier in the day, Mumbai North West Lok Sabha constituency returning officer Vandana Suryavanshi held a press conference to refute the news report.

"The EVM is a standalone system and there is no need for an OTP to unlock it. It is not programmable and has no wireless communication capabilities. It is a complete lie being spread by a newspaper, which has been issued a notice under sections 499, 505 of the Indian Penal Code for defamation and spreading false news," Suryavanshi said.

Advance technical features and robust administrative safeguards are in place to rule out any possibility of manipulation of EVMs, she said and asserted the counting process is independent and has nothing to do with unauthorised use of mobile phone.

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Published 16 June 2024, 16:55 IST

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