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Show us your EVMs, will prove hacking charge: AAP to EC




New Delhi, May 11 : The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today demanded that an all-party committee be formed under the aegis of the Election Commission (EC) and be given access to electronic voting machines (EVM) used in the recent elections in the country.

The party, which claims that EVMs can be manipulated, also sought to drum up support for its campaign through a demonstration outside the EC headquarters, a day before a scheduled all-party meeting with the commission on the issue.

AAP MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj, who had hacked an EVM replica on the floor of the Delhi Assembly on May 9, told a press conference that the question was no longer if EVMs could be manipulated, but whether the recent polls could have been rigged.

The AAP fared poorly in the polls, which were largely won by the Bharatiya Janata Party.

“We will request the EC to form a committee and put representatives of all political parties and even the EC on it. Our expert team will show the committee how voting machines were rigged,” Bhardwaj said.

He said any party could name five booths where they suspected EVMs had been tampered with.

“We will demand that the machines that were used be provided to us,” he said.

Meanwhile, hundreds of AAP workers came out to the streets, demanding that paper trail-equipped EVMs or voter- verifiable paper audit trail (VVPAT) be used in future elections.

The party’s newly-appointed Delhi convenor, Gopal Rai, who spearheaded the protest, led a delegation to the EC. It met EC officials and handed over a letter addressed to Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi.

Asked why they thought EVMs could be rigged, the protesters, many of whom carried replicas of EVM machines, mostly cited Bhardwaj’s live demonstration in the assembly.

“This is how BJP won the polls in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. Even the division along caste lines could not have helped them with such a huge victory,” said AAP worker Pragati, who had come from Mundka near the city’s western border, for the march.

Vikas, a young AAP supporter, summed up the sentiment of the protest, as he observed, “Duniya mai kaunsa machine hack nahi kia ja sakta? Toh EVM kyun nahi?” (Name one machine that cannot be hacked. So why not an EVM?)

At tomorrow’s EC meet, AAP will be represented by Bhardwaj, who claims expertise in the area in his capacity as an engineer, and two technical experts.

Rai said in his letter to the EC that the live demonstration — done on a “replica of the EVMs used by the ECI” — had demolished the idea that voting machines used by it were tamper proof.

“The Commission should allow technical inspection of its EVMs by the expert panels of various political parties to see if the EVMs can be hacked or not. Polls should be held only on VVPAT-enabled machines so that paper trail guarantees integrity of the electoral process,” he wrote.

The VVPAT-equipped EVMs dispense a paper slip which helps voters confirm that their vote has indeed gone to the candidate of their choice.


KC Tyagi says, Cambridge Analytica has no links with JD(U) nor his son



New Delhi, March 22: Senior Janata Dal (United) leader KC Tyagi on Thursday rejected any links with the Cambridge Analytica (CA).

Speaking to Media, he stated that JDU has no relation with Cambridge Analytics, neither has its CEO ever met Bihar Chief Minister Nitish nor me. In any case, JDU is a Socialist outfit and we stay away from such things, except for maybe Prashant Kishore ji helping us during last assembly polls.

There was only a work relation between my son Amrish’s company and Cambridge Analytics , there is no financial transaction or shareholding, everything is open to probe. JDU also has no links with this, neither did they promote us in 2010 polls”, he added.

KC Tyagi’s son Amrish Tyagi owns Ovelina Business Intelligence (OBI), which was Cambridge Analytica’s associate in the country.

OBI in association with CA parent company SCL Group had formed a firm, SCL India.

Meanwhile hitting out at Janata Dal (United), RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, said the name of the company coming out in this matter is in the BJP client list, run by KC Tyagi’s son.

“JD(U) General Secretary’s son is involved and JD(U) is saying that we do not know anything”, he further asserted.

The alleged involvement of the data analytics company and Facebook has erupted a massive political debate across the world as well as in India with a big war-of-words breaking out between the ruling BJP and main Congress.


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Congress hits out at BJP, says Sabse bade data chor macha rahe hai zyada shor




New Delhi, March 22: Lashing out at the Bharatiya Janata Party for levelling charges over the alleged data theft, Congress on Thursday said the ruling government has become a manufacturer of fake news.

Congress communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said the BJP Govt has become a manufacturer of fake news. Sabse bade data chor macha rahe hain sabse zyada shor”.

Taking a jibe the BJP-led government, he said, “Hitler had an associate called Goebbels, Narendra Modi has an associate called Ravi Shankar Prasad.”

His reaction comes soon after, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad retaliated his allegations of Congress’s links to political data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica (CA) and claimed that the firm was involved in Rahul Gandhi’s social media campaign and there had been meetings too in this regard.

The minister, accepting full responsibility, said that CA had been managing the social media campaign for Rahul Gandhi and there had been meetings also in this connection.

“The Congress cannot run away from this fact. If the Congress maintains a conspicuous silence on such an important news of the involvement of a dubious social media company and does not counter it, then I am sorry. They don’t have any right to run the country,” he said.

Earlier on Wednesday also, the Congress denied links to CA that has been accused of data theft to allegedly influence the electoral process.


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Death of 39 Indians in Iraq: Congress to move Privilege Motion against Swaraj



New Delhi, March 22: The Congress will move a Privilege Motion against EAM Sushma Swaraj for misleading the kin of the Indians killed in Iraq by the Islamic State.

Speaking to media, Senior Congress leader Ambika Soni said: “We are going to bring a Privilege Motion against the External Affairs Minister for misleading the families of the 39 Indians as well as the House”.

EAM on Tuesday confirmed the death of missing 39 Indians who were abducted by ISIS in June 2014.

Former MoS for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor, too, had cornered the ruling government for giving false hope to the families of the hostages all these years.

“Giving falsehood to people is actually cruel and suggests a certain level of lack transparency on part of the government, Tharoor asserted.

Echoing on similar views, another Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Wednesday asked the Central and State governments to provide financial assistance to the families of deceased and job opportunities in government sector.

The thirty-nine persons, most of them hailed from Punjab, were working on projects near Mosul, when they were abducted during their evacuation.


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