EC Rubbishes EVM Hacking Claims Made In London Press Meet Attended By Kapil Sibal, Mulls Legal Action

EC Rubbishes EVM Hacking Claims Made In London Press Meet Attended By Kapil Sibal, Mulls Legal ActionEVM, VVPAT machine on display (Mujeeb Faruqui/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Amidst claims made by an Indian-origin cyber hacker based in the US, the Election Commission (EC) on Monday (21 January) asserted that it firmly stands by "empirical facts about foolproof nature" of electronic voting machines (EVMs).

The hacker had claimed that the EVM’s are vulnerable to hacking, following which the EC has asserted that it is mulling legal action, New Indian Express has reported.

The hacker, Syed Shuja, claimed that he hacked EVMs in the 2014 general election as well as 2015 Delhi assembly polls. He also claimed that many political leaders of various parties had contacted him to do so.

Shuja, addressing a press conference in London via Skype, alleged that he fled India in 2014 as he felt threatened in the country after some of his team members were killed. He is now seeking political asylum in the United States.

Incidentally the press conference was also attended by senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal. The Congress has since then distanced itself from his appearance claiming that he was invited in a private capacity.

Meanwhile, the EC in a statement rubbished the claims made by the hacker and said, “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,”

The commission reiterated that EVMs used by it are manufactured by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL) under “very strict” supervisory and security conditions.

“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 added.

"It is being separately examined as to what legal action can and should be taken in the matter," the statement said.