As the result day (May 23) of Lok Sabha Elections 2019 is nearing, political parties, some of whom had bitterly fought with one another, are coalescing into two major groups. But the behaviour of the two groups looks like an essay in contrast. While the first group is rallying around one figure, the second appears all over with no central point. Similarly, the first exudes confidence and (reportedly) is deliberating on action plans in the immediate aftermath of the results, the second comes out as jittery and frustrated, afraid of facing the results.
The optics presented by these two groups post the Exit Polls tell it all. The members of outgoing Union Ministry sit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an informal meeting at the BJP head quarters in Delhi. And all the key leaders of NDA alliance dine with BJP president Amit Shah.
On the other hand, leaders of 21 Opposition parties approach the Election Commission with complaints on Electronic Voting Machine. They continue to cast aspersion on the device, and appear determined to reject the outcome it throws up, if it goes against them. Apparently, no amount of explanation can satisfy them. After suspecting EVM hacking and tampering, now their grouse seems to be around some “conspiracy theory” about EVM swapping.
Not that they are not aware that such things cannot happen. When the EC had thrown an open challenge to hack or tamper EVM, none came forward. And every party knows that swapping of machine is impossible as they are sealed and opened in the presence of the party agents, which gets video-graphed. However, these parties seem to be using EVM for ulterior motives. May be they are creating doubts about the legitimacy of the poll process in common people. May be they are preparing the ground to disrupt and create chaos during counting. May be they hope to edge out EVM with their complaints and see the return of ballot papers, which are easier to manipulate with rigging and booth capturing.
The irony is sections of media too contributing to muddy the water over EVM as shown by the following tweet.
In fact, a neta from Bihar, Upendra Kushwaha has actually warned of bloodshed on the street. He called upon the workers of Bihar Grand alliance (comprising the Congress, RJD, RSLP and HAM) to take up arms if EVM are found tampered.
Fortunately, barring West Bengal, polling was by and large peaceful through stretched over 38 days unlike in the era of ballot paper. Will peace prevail on the counting day as well?