Congress will continue with campaign on greater use of VVPATs: Jairam Ramesh


PTI, Apr 27, 2024, 8:20 AM IST

New Delhi: The Congress will continue with its political campaign on greater use of VVPATs to increase public trust in the electoral process, the party said on Friday after the Supreme Court rejected pleas seeking complete cross-verification of votes cast using EVMs.

The Congress was not a party, directly or indirectly, to the petition on VVPATs rejected by the Supreme Court today, party general secretary Jairam Ramesh said.

“We have taken note of the verdict of the 2-judge bench and our political campaign on the greater use of VVPATs to increase public trust in the electoral process will continue,” Ramesh said in a post on X.

Ramesh also hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s terming the SC verdict a “tight slap” to Congress, saying the BJP had received a “tighter slap” when the apex court struck down its electoral bond scheme.

“Nevertheless, the Prime Minister says that the Supreme Court verdict on VVPATs is a tight slap to the Opposition and that we should apologise to the nation.

“Remember that a few weeks ago the Supreme Court had given the PM a tighter slap – in fact, a spanking – by declaring the corruption-ridden electoral bonds scheme not just illegal but also unconstituional (sic),” he said in a post on X.

“It is indeed the PM who should apologise to the nation for amassing Rs 8200 crore over the last five years through his well-documented Chaar Raaste of collecting Chanda –
1. Chanda Do, Dhanda Lo
2. ⁠Theka Lo, Ghoos do
3. ⁠Hafta Vasooli
4. ⁠Farzi Companies,” he added in the post.

The Supreme Court on Friday rejected pleas seeking complete cross-verification of votes cast using EVMs with a Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) and said “blindly distrusting” any aspect of the system can breed unwarranted scepticism.

Maintaining that “democracy is all about striving to build harmony and trust between all institutions”, a bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta delivered two concurring verdicts and dismissed all the pleas in the matter, including those seeking to go back to ballot papers in elections.

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