A Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) worker on Monday threw ink on an electronic voting machine (EVM) at a polling booth in Maharashtra's Thane district. As he was being bundled away by the police, he shouted slogans against EVMs, demanding they be replaced by ballot papers.
"EVMs should be replaced with ballot papers. This is the demand of the people of the country. EVMs murdabad (down with EVMs)," he shouted, as he was whisked away by security personnel.
The opposition parties demand that EVMs be replaced with ballot papers as they are susceptible to tampering. Before the national election, several leaders had moved the Election Commission with their request, which was turned down by the poll body.
BSP chief Mayawati had blamed the machines for her party's crushing loss in the national election earlier this year.
#WATCH Thane: A Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) leader, Sunil Khambe threw ink on the EVM at a polling booth while voting for #MaharashtraAssemblyPolls was underway today. He was raising slogans of "EVM murdabad" & "EVM nahi chalega". He was later taken to a police station by police. pic.twitter.com/92MnGO2IEa— ANI (@ANI) October 21, 2019
"The whole country was opposing EVMs and after today's results, the remaining faith of the public will also vanish," she had said.
The BJP had scored a landslide victory in the Lok Sabha polls.
Ahead of the assembly elections in Maharashtra and Haryana, the Election Commission had called ballot papers "history", insisting that EVMs were tamper-proof.
"We have told political parties that ballot paper is history and going back to it is not possible," Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora had said.
A BJP candidate in Haryana, Bakshish Singh Virk, meanwhile, has triggered a controversy with his comment that no matter what button is pressed on EVMs, every vote will go to the ruling party. In a sarcastic tweet later, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi called him the most honest man in the BJP.
The exit polls have predicted a comfortable victory for the BJP in Maharashtra and Haryana. The results will be declared on October 24.
With inputs from PTI
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