Congress speaking language of defeat in Assam: Union minister

Guwahati, Apr 2 (PTI) Union minister Jitendra Singh on Friday said the Congress is speaking the “language of defeat” in Assam and raising unsubstantiated allegations of tampering with electronic voting machines (EVMs).

He said it is now a known practice for the Congress that whenever it wins elections, the EVMs are okay, but when it loses, it finds faults with the machines.

Singh, the Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), said the memory of the Congress leadership is too short to recall that the EVMs were introduced in the polling process when the party itself was in power, in the best interest of transparency, secrecy and saving time.

“It is a matter of shame that when the election bodies and their functionaries in some of the advanced countries of the world are visiting India today to study the meticulous and foolproof functioning of the Election Commission (EC) and the conduct of multiple elections by it, the Congress party is finding faults with the election mechanism in a desperate bid to keep its flock together,” he said.

However, Singh said this chicanery is now meeting the fate of diminishing returns and only leading to electoral reversals, one after the other, for the Congress.

“The Congress is speaking the language of defeat in Assam and raising unsubstantiated allegations of tampering with EVMs,” he told PTI.

The Congress questioned the EC on Friday after a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate’s vehicle was found transporting a polled EVM in Assam’s Karimganj district and said if the poll body does not wake up now and remains “complicit”, it will be fatal for democracy.

Responding to the Congress’s allegation, Singh said the charge has been thoroughly probed by the EC and the report has been put in the public domain, after which there is nothing left for further clarification.

He said whenever the Congress is faced with an imminent poll defeat, it takes refuge in the alibi of malfunctioning or tampering of EVMs.

“The Election Commission of India is a constitutional body and for a disciplined political party like us, the verdict of the EC is above all and it is not within the propriety to make any comment after that,” the minister said.

The third and final phase of the Assam polls is scheduled to be held on April 6.