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Mayawati and the EVM brigade: The writing's on the wall but they are looking for excuses
Winning and losing is all part of the game of politics. What is important is how you accept your win or loss. Great politicians display humility and politeness in wins and grace at their loss. Irresponsible politicians show arrogance on winning and give lame excuses after a loss.

In the recently concluded Assembly elections, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi deserves to be appreciated for his humility despite such a grand win, at the same time the entire opposition barring Captain Amarinder Singh should be deplored for finding excuses like blaming the allegedly tampered EVMs for their loss.

Mayawati was the first one to blame the EVMs citing an example that in a booth of 1,250 people, all of whom are from the Muslim community, how can the BJP win 750 votes? The counter question is why can't Muslims vote for the BJP? Isn't the party strongly indulging in vote bank politics by taking for granted the minority community, spouting that they will never vote for the BJP? Doesn't this mind set prove the arrogance of these vote bank politicians considering a community as their political slaves?

Now some people will jump the gun on me citing that people are ready to give affidavits that they didn't vote for the BJP. My only answer is then what remains the significance of a secret ballot? How can you ask someone whom did he vote for? How can you ask somebody to submit an affidavit that she/he has voted for X party or Y party? Isn't this a violation of Constitutional norms? Voting is the right of any voter and he can't be asked for whom he or she voted for. If you raise such questions, then it means that you perhaps have the right to know it because you might have traded something in return for his/her vote. This is not democracy.

In the example cited by BSP one can understand the sentiments of Muslims who voted for the BJP, because if they confess that they voted for the BJP, then they may face social boycott. One shouldn't forgot a couple of cases during the last Assam Assembly election, where ladies were divorced through triple talaq only because they confessed voting for BJP.

There are also numerous past examples of violence in various villages after some influential political party came to know that a particular booth or village hadn't voted for them. Such violence was commonly witnessed in Bengal, Bihar, Kerala, UP etc during paper ballot days. That's why lot of reforms were introduced to ensure secrecy so that no one gets to know which booth or village voted for which party. With EVMs too, efforts are being taken to use totalizer machines so that complete secrecy is maintained.

Although the SP and Congress initially accepted their loss in UP with grace but they were quick to support Mayawati's blame on tampered EVMs. Arvind Kejriwal came out with another theory that 25 per cent votes of AAP were diverted towards BJP and Congress. Nobody of course is ready to comment on how such tampering could have been possible.

The point to be noted here is that the Election Commission of India in one of credible institutions of Indian democracy that has mustered a lot of accolades even from abroad. Apart from the multi-layer security arrangement, the important point is that representatives of all parties take part in a mock polling before the actual voting starts. The real voting only starts when representatives of all parties give their consent that the EVM is working perfectly. After completion of voting the EVMs are sealed and signed by representatives of all parties. To add to it, EVMs are not PC connected electronic devices nor do they have an operating system. Thus, experts claim that tampering EVMs is nearly impossible.

In 2009, BJP's Subramanian Swami, Lal Krishna Advani and many others had complained that EVMs were tempered with by the Congress-led UPA. The public considered them as sullen losers who were cribbing at their loss. Had Narendra Modi not arrived at the scene, BJP could never have won the 2014 general election as the erstwhile senior BJP leaders were lacking in grace and had lost credibility among public. Subramanian Swami took the matter to the SC and finally the apex court ruled that Swami's allegation had no merit. SC also advised to implement VVPAT (Voter-Verified Paper Audit Trail) which is being implemented phase wise. As per EC's version, the VVPAT would be implemented fully in 2019 general election.

One can ask why these opposition parties are blaming EVMs? My answer is simple that these parties don't know how to accept loss in a dignified manner. They always search for lame excuses. Communal polarisation, money power and muscle power etc are common excuses for their losses. And now EVM tampering has also become an excuse.

What they don't realise is that people are no longer ready to accept such excuses. People now want to see the intent and these political parties are unable to present that intent. You can fool all for some time. You can fool some all the time. But you can't fool all, at all times. That's the important message the opposition parties are yet to learn as the writing's on the wall.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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