Opposition parties on Thursday decided to approach the Election Commission to voice concern over the use of electronic voting machines for conducting elections, particularly its plans to allow remote voting for migrant voters.
Nationalist Congress Party supremo Sharad Pawar convened the meeting of leaders of opposition parties in the Rajya Sabha, which was attended by Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, independent Rajya Sabha member Kapil Sibal, Samajwadi Party leader Ramgopal Yadav, Shiv Sena-Thackeray faction member Anil Desai and Bharat Rashtra Samithi member K Keshav Rao among others.
There was no representative from Trinamool Congress at the meeting.
"We just raised certain questions and we expect a reply from the Election Commission," Pawar told reporters after the meeting.
Briefing the media about the meeting, Digvijay Singh said opposition parties had unanimously rejected the Election Commission plans on deployment of remote EVMs to allow migrant voters exercise their franchise.
"The opposition parties had even turned down the EC's plans to make a demonstration about the remote-EVMs. There is doubt amongst voters on EVMs. Earlier, they used to say EVM is a stand alone machine, but now they are saying the names of candidates can be added through the internet," the former Madhya Pradesh chief minister said.
Sibal said no other country uses EVMs for elections, then why should the machines be used in India.
Sibal and Singh brushed aside questions on whether they doubted the electoral victories of opposition parties where EVMs were deployed for the conduct of polls.
"We have decided to move the Election Commission one last time. We want to hear from the Election Commission on our concerns. If the EC does not address our concerns, we will take political action," Sibal said, without elaborating.
Digvijay Singh said Citizens Commission on Elections chaired by retired Supreme Court judge Madan Lokur had raised doubts about EVMs and petitioned the Election Commission but had received no response from the Commission.