Election Commission of India (ECI) on Tuesday filed a police complaint against the EVM 'hacker' Syed Shuja who claimed to know about the hacking of polling machines and instances of when they happened during an EVM 'Hackathon' event which was held on Monday.
A complaint has been filed, and the ECI has requested for lodging of an FIR and to investigate the matter for violation of section 505 (1) b of IPC.
On Monday, an event was held in London, in which an U.S. expert named Syed Shuja made wild claims regarding the functioning of EVM and spoke about the know-how of instances when the polling machines were tampered in India.
During the proceedings, which also had senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal in attendance, the EVM hacker mentioned that the 2014 Lok Sabha elections as well as the five-state elections of 2018 were rigged.
Immediately after the conclusion of the event, the ECI rejected and refused all the claims by the expert, and reiterated its stance that EVMs cannot be tampered under any cicumstances.
Following was the statement of ECI in the aftermath of the 'Hackathon' event:
It has come to the notice of Election Commission of India that an event claiming to demonstrate EVMs used by ECI can be tampered with, has been organised in London.
Whereas, ECI has been wary of becoming a party to this motivated slugfest, ECI firmly stands by the empirical facts about foolproof nature of ECI EVMs deployed in elections in India.
It needs to be reiterated that these EVMs are manufactured in Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL) under very strict supervisory and security conditions and there are rigorous Standard Operating Procedures meticulously observed at all stages under the supervision of a Committee of eminent technical experts constituted way back in 2010. It is being separately examined as to what legal action can and should be taken in the matter.
On Tuesday, all the claims made by the U.S. expert were put to rest by the co-organiser of the event, as well as one of the journalist who was part of the proceedings. Foreign Press Association, the co-organizer along with Indian Journalists' Association (Europe), termed the allegations as "unsubstantiated".
Italian journalist Deborah Bonetti, who was moderating the event and asking questions to the cyber hacker from the stage, also made clear statements that the EVM expert, who is seeking political asylum in the US, had "no proof at all" for the "extreme allegations".