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  Metros   Mumbai  24 May 2019  No point in blaming EVMs, says Sharad Pawar

No point in blaming EVMs, says Sharad Pawar

THE ASIAN AGE. | VRUSHALI PURANDARE
Published : May 24, 2019, 3:54 am IST
Updated : May 24, 2019, 3:54 am IST

On his grand-nephew Parth Pawar's defeat in the Maval constituency, he said it was a difficult seat for the party to win.

Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar
 Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar

Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar in a press conference on Thursday, acknowledged that there was no point blaming the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs). Interestingly, it was he, along with Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, who jointly held a press conference during elections to level allegations against the EVMs.

Mr Pawar on Thursday told reporters that he would not pin all the blame on EVMs for the defeat of anti-BJP parties in the Lok Sabha polls and added that he had gracefully accepted the people’s mandate.

 

Even though NCP had repeatedly raised concerns over the possibility of EVM tampering, he said, “Doubts were indeed raised (about the EVMs). But I don't want to blame the machines now since the result is out. Once the verdict is out, it has to be accepted gracefully and I am accepting it gracefully. The ‘spectre of suspicion’ indeed prevailed in the minds of people in the run-up to the polls.”

Mr Pawar said that Opposition parties had anticipated that the BJP would do well in certain states, but had not expected "such a big victory" across the country. To drive home his point about the EVMs,

Mr Pawar said that such suspicions had never been raised in the past, citing instances such as the Congress winning around 400 seats under Rajiv Gandhi’s leadership in 1984.

 

The NCP chief said that his party would introspect and toil to better its prospects in the Maharashtra Assembly elections scheduled to be held later this year. Efforts to stitch a bigger alliance of Opposition parties at the national level did not succeed, he admitted. Mr Pawar also noted that his party was well placed to win four seats in Maharashtra and likely to bag a few more. On his grand-nephew Parth Pawar's defeat in the Maval constituency, he said it was a difficult seat for the party to win.

Meanwhile, Union minister Suresh Prabhu said, “As Mr Modi said, the Opposition is stirring “needless controversy” over EVMs and the EC. The only way EVMs could help BJP to win was through the faith reposed by the citizens of India in Mr Modi’s leadership by voting for him.”

 

“Denigrating EVMs has become the norm for parties losing elections. BJP never alleged a voting fraud using EVMs when it lost in the polls. Bleating over ‘tampered’ EVMs is nothing but intellectual bankruptcy. It will further erode the credibility of those making unfounded allegations,” hesaid.

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Tags: sharad pawar, 17thloksabhaelectionresults