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Mayawati dares BJP to hold polls using ballot papers

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

leader today dared to hold assembly elections in using paper ballots if it was confident of the people's mandate and demanded a to scrap the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) in elections.

Raising the issue in Rajya Sabha, she said the of the just-concluded assembly elections in and were "not a verdict of people but a verdict of EVMs."

She said her party has given a notice under rule 267 seeking suspension of business to take up the issue.

When was in power, senior leaders had expressed apprehensions on the use of EVMs saying free and fair elections cannot happen using the EVMs, she said.

Now that is in government, they are now justifying EVMs, she said, adding that major democracies in the world use paper ballot for casting votes.

She went on to allege that votes cast in her party's favour were credited to BJP by faulty or tampered EVMs.

"If your conscience is so clear, why not call for elections (again) using paper ballot," she said amid slogan shouting by treasury benches to counter her.

She demanded that a be brought in the ongoing budget session of the Parliament to scrap the use of EVMs in elections.

Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said he was not allowing the notice as a short duration discussion on electoral reforms is scheduled tomorrow and these points could be raise then.

however persisted with her point for some time but took her seat after Kurien insisted on not allowing her notice.

(Reopens PAR2)

Later, Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad dismissed

Mayawati's allegations and said the Election Commission was much appreciated the world over for its free and fair conduct of elections across the country.

"EVMs are technology perfect," he said asking the opposition to respect the people's mandate.

First Published: Tue, March 21 2017. 13:02 IST