A politician affiliated to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Saurabh Bhardwaj represents the Greater Kailash constituency as a Member of the 6th Delhi Legislative Assembly. Born and raised in New Delhi, Bhardwaj is a computer science engineer and a law graduate from Osmania University.
Bhardwaj was first elected to the Delhi Assembly in the 49-day AAP government led by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. He was awarded a bunch of ministries, including food & supply, transport, environment and general administration department. However, that government fell following a dharna by Kejriwal.
For the next Assembly election, held in 2015, the AAP again reposed its faith in Bhardwaj for the Greater Kailash seat, and he did not disappoint. While he had defeated Ajay Kumar Malhotra of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 2013, he beat the BJP’s Rakesh Kumar Gullaiya in 2015.
Bhardwaj, who had previously pursued an engineering career, emerged as the face of the AAP’s claim that Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) could be hacked. Amid allegations of tampering by the BJP to manipulate votes in its favour, he claimed that all one needed to know was a “secret code” to be able to tamper with EVMs, and that the code could be fed into a machine while casting vote. The AAP gave a “demonstration” on ways to rig an EVM, and said the machines are a “threat to democracy”.
During the demonstration, Bhardwaj showed how votes polled in favour of AAP could be transferred to the BJP. He showed “secret codes” that were used to tamper the EVM he was testing. The party’s claims, however, were rebuffed by the Election Commission of India (ECI).
As the party’s official spokesperson, Bhardwaj has been very active in putting forward the AAP’s views and narratives.
Delhi Assembly election 2020
For the 2020 Delhi election, the AAP has again fielded Bhardwaj from Greater Kailash. This time, he is pitted against the BJP’s Shikha Rai and the Congress’ Sukhbir Singh Pawar.