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Lok Sabha Elections 2024 | Rahul, Aaditya should apologise for remarks based on news report over EVMs: Sanjay Nirupam

He claimed that an announcement of Kirtikar's victory was made before the counting process was completed, suggesting a deliberate effort to malign Waikar and the Shiv Sena led by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.
Last Updated : 17 June 2024, 10:18 IST

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Mumbai: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Nirupam on Monday said Congress MP Rahul Gandhi and Shiv Sena (UBT) MLA Aaditya Thackeray should apologise for disseminating "false" information based on a news report on the EVMs.

A political slugfest erupted on Sunday over EVM tampering claims with Gandhi, Thackeray and other opposition leaders citing a media report which alleged that a relative of Shiv Sena's Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat candidate Ravindra Waikar was found using a mobile phone "connected" to an EVM during the counting of votes on June 4.

The media report said a relative of Waikar, who won from seat by just 48 votes, had used a mobile phone to "unlock" an electronic voting machine (EVM) when the votes were being counted.

Vandana Suryavanshi, returning officer of the constituency, however, dismissed the report in 'mid-day' newspaper as "false news" and said a defamation notice has been issued to the publication.

She asserted that the EVM is a standalone system, not programmable and has no wireless communication capabilities.

Waikar won the polls from Mumbai's North-West seat by 48 votes against Shiv Sena (UBT) candidate Amol Kirtikar.

Speaking to reporters here, Nirupam said the English daily has "admitted to its error" in the news report.

"I urge for a similar accountability from Rahul Gandhi, (lawyer) Prashant Bhushan, and other leaders of the opposition INDIA bloc for amplifying the misinformation. Aaditya Thackeray used the same news to perpetuate a false narrative, which has had significant repercussions. Now, they all should tender an apology," he said.

Nirupam expressed concern over doubts being raised about EVM tampering.

He claimed that an announcement of Kirtikar's victory was made before the counting process was completed, suggesting a deliberate effort to malign Waikar and the Shiv Sena led by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

Nirupam also sought an apology from the Shiv Sena (UBT) mouthpiece 'Saamana', claiming it published a similar "false news" about the Mumbai North West seat result, and said he would escalate the matter to the Press Council of India if necessary.

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Published 17 June 2024, 10:18 IST

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