The election commission on Saturday announced that it will hold an open challenge from June 3 for political parties to prove their allegations that the electronic voting machines (EVMs) can be tampered.
The challenge will be open only to recognised national and regional parties which can nominate up to three representatives to take part in the challenge, provided they are all of Indian nationality.
Announcing the conditions of the challenge, chief election commissioner Nasim Zaidi said all political parties which want to participate in the challenge will have to confirm their participation to the poll panel by 5 pm on May 26. The duration of the challenge is mostly likely to be spread over 4 to 5 days, but will be finalised depending on the response of the political parties, he said.
The EC’s decision to hold the open challenge comes in the wake of allegations by political parties such as the BSP, the AAP and the TMC, that the EVMs used in the assembly elections in five states including Uttar Pradesh in February-March were rigged.
These parties have alleged that the EVMs were tampered to benefit the ruling BJP and have demanded reverting to paper ballots.
Earlier this month, the AAP in a demonstration inside the Delhi assembly, claimed that it had proved how an EVM could be hacked to favour a particular party.
The Election Commission had dismissed the “so-called demonstration of tampering of look-alike EVM” and also announced that it would soon stage a hacking challenge.