Amid concerns over alleged tempering and suspected manipulation of EVMs used in 2019 Lok Sabha election, the Election Commission set up a 24-hour control room to monitor complaints relating to EVMs.
”The 24 hour EVM Control Room will be made functional from tonight at Nirvachan Sadan to monitor complaints relating to polled EVMs,” the poll panel said in a statement.
“The complaints related to storage issues at strongrooms, security of strongrooms, permissions to candidates to post their agents at strongrooms, CCTV monitoring, movement of any EVMs, and any complaints during counting related to EVMs can be informed at control room, number is 011-23052123 (with 5 hunting lines),” it said.
Referring to the allegations and complaints, the poll panel earlier in the day said it would like to “emphatically and unambiguously” clarify that all such reports and allegations are “absolutely false and factually incorrect.”
”The visuals aired on TV and social media do not pertain to any EVMs used during the polls”, it said.
In an earlier statement, the EC said, after the close of polls, all polled EVMs and VVPATs are brought under security cover to designated strongrooms, which are sealed with double locks in the presence of candidates and observers of the commission.
The entire process of storage and sealing of the strongroom is filmed.
“Continuous CCTV camera coverage is done till completion of counting. Each strongroom is guarded with round-the-clock security by Central Armed Police Forces.
”On counting day, the strongrooms are opened in the presence of candidates or their agents and observers. This is also filmed,” the EC said in the statement.
Before counting starts, the counting agents are shown the address tags, seals and serial number of EVMs to satisfy themselves to the genuineness and authenticity of the machines used in the polls, it said.
The provisions and protocols have been explained to political parties on multiple occasions, including in several of the 93 meetings held with them at the commission, since the announcement of elections, the EC pointed out.