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BJP open to use of paper ballots over EVMs in future elections

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday said that it can consider using paper ballots instead of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in future elections if every party thinks that it should be done.

“I would like to remind Congress that the decision to shift from paper ballots to EVMs was taken because of a larger consensus. Now today, if every party think that we should return to paper ballots again, after due discussion, we can consider,” BJP General Secretary Ram Madhav said.

The statement came hours after the Congress on Saturday urged that the Election Commission (EC) revert to the old practice of paper ballots in future elections instead of EVMs.

This is necessary as there are misgivings on “misuse” of EVMs to “manipulate the outcome contrary to popular verdict”, the party said during its 84th plenary session.

The Congress and other political parties have been alleging that EVMs were tampered during polls and demanding reintroduction of the ballot paper system of voting.

The party called for reverting to the old practice of paper ballots citing it was adopted by other major democracies to help restore the credibility of the electoral process.

A resolution was also moved in this regard in the plenary session.

In its resolution, the party said the BJP’s move of simultaneous elections is “misplaced” and is “incompatible with the Constitution as also impractical”.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been pressing upon the idea of holding simultaneous elections to Parliament and state assemblies, contending that it will save money and time.

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