Even while violence broke out at several parts of the state and an incident wherein the Pavan Kalyan’s Jana Sena candidate from Guntakal assembly constituency in Ananthapur, damaging an EVM accusing it tampered, the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) of Andhra Pradesh, Gopal Krishna Dwivedi, dismissed that the complaints are ill-found.
According to him, only 25 issues out of 344 reported are pending and that almost all the 92,000 EVMs in 45,920 polling centres functioning without any hindrance.
While addressing a news conference late in the noon, he appealed to the voters not to believe the rumors and if anyone has evidence to back up their allegations they can submit the same to EC to be resolved. “Anyone can anything and make wild allegations. But, need to evidence to back up their complaints. Otherwise, it means nothing,” he added.
However, he admitted tht there were delay at a few paces causing inconvenience to the electorate who were standing in the queues.
He admitted that at 6 places, EVMs have been damaged. However, he said they were rectified immediately and ensured polling to continue. At all these paces, cases were booked and offenders arrested. More incidents of clashes indeed taken places in 12 other areas. He said police prompted acted to bring the situation under control.
Responding to a question on repolling, Dwivedi said so far there have been no isssues. If necessary, repolling has to be taken place, the election commission would take a final call. He again reiterated their demand to be justified with sufficient evidence to prove the repolling is imminent.
He claimed that saying; ‘we are fair and transparent’ and those who are in queues by 6 pm will be allowed to cast their vote even if time has to be extended till the last one vote was cast.
He was of the firm opinion that EVMs are not at fault. In the same breath admitted that some staff might have failed to properly set up the EVMs. In case of any technical issues they would be resolved by the staff concerned and polling will not get hampered.
The CEO also clarified on the complaints regardinng lack of proper arrangements, saying that necessary instructions were given to district collectors to resolve those issues.