EVM: Demon Of Democracy
The demon of democracy had raised its ugly head in the country in 1975 when there was promulgation of internal Emergency at the behest of Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister for throttling democracy and to impose family dictatorship. Fortunately the country then had a leader like Jayaprakash Narayan who could foresee the evil design of Mrs Gandhi and launched his total revolution which ultimately was converted into a movement for saving democracy and the constitutional rights of the citizens. Political parties and organisations like R.S.S, Bharatiya Jansangh, Socialist Party, Sarvoday Organisation and others joined the movement of Jayaprakash to save their valued democracy. In spite of promulgation of Emergency and indiscriminate detention of about one lakh and fifty thousand people of the country under maintenance of Internal Security Act, the impact of the movement was so powerful that the family dictatorship was crushed in the 1977 election and the banner of democracy was again fluttered in the sky. As a participant in J.P. movement and a prisoner under MISA during Emergency I experienced the great danger thrusted on democracy and the rights of the citizens. The attempts to murder democracy was openly exhibited then by the close associates of Mrs. Gandhi and herself.
But now the great danger posed to democracy is not visible. Like slow poisoning it is killing the essence and values of democracy. Unless the democratic-minded people and the political parties try to detect the danger and take preventive measures, it will be difficult to save democracy and its great tradition. Due to the magnetic leadership of Narendra Modi and his assurance for the development of the country, strengthening democracy and to bring back the derailed economy and administration to the rails, people firmly stood by him and BJP swept the poll in the election of 2014. Still, the danger to democracy has not been thwarted. Let us now look to the political parties who are mainly responsible for upholding the value and dignity of democracy. In most of the regional parties, party supremos are virtual dictators who ruthlessly suppress the internal democracy and the independent voices in their parties. Though the national parties stand on a better footing in this respect, they too are not completely free from this malady. Some of the political parties adopt all sorts of unfair means to win election and to come to power at any cost which is endangering democracy. Unless these power-hungry political leaders and so-called supremos are exposed and cut to size by the people, democracy cannot survive.
Now, let us go to the real democracy in the country. All nasty and heinous tactics are adopted by some political parties and specially the great supremos of some Regional parties for coming to power. Ignoring the real development of the state and the people, they are announcing some cheap and populist schemes to defraud the people and creating their vote banks. Their massive money power, misutilisation of the government machinery, distributing funds and liquors among the voters influence the entire election. Under such circumstances, how free and fair election for smooth functioning of democracy, is possible. Most dangerous is the EVM tampering by some ruling party supremos which are Brahmastras in their hands for destroying democracy by negativing the real verdict of the people. Since the credibility of the EVM is lost, most of the countries of the world have either changed the system or have brought reform in it. In USA almost all its states have made mandatory laws, bringing reform in EVM, by which when the button of the EVM is pressed, it not only records the vote, but a paper slip comes out where the name and the symbol of the candidate is printed. The same can be verified by the voter and kept in a separate box and in case of dispute that can be counted to do away with the mischief of EVM. In a leading judgment by the Supreme Court, a direction was given for holding the 2014 election in the same method like that of USA but the UPA Government avoided the same on the plea that such a huge number of EVM machines could not be manufactured before the election. It will not be out of place to mention here that BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of Odisha, who is alleged to have mastered in this magic of EVM tampering, had adopted this method and got a massive mandate completely negativing all the survey reports, Exit poll reports in Odisha which have come out to true in the national level.
This could not have been possible without EVM tampering, in face of a terrific Modi wave in Odisha, where Exit poll predictions and people version were that BJP would capture almost half of the seats for parliament. It is high time, that the Supreme Court judgment should be implemented immediately in the greater interest of the democracy, country and the people, Unless the true lovers of democracy raise their sword of consciousness and rouse the spirit of patriotism and love for democracy amongst the people, democracy cannot be saved from the clutches of these power hungry demons, the so-called political supermos and the greatest demon, the EVM.
By Biswabhusan Harichandan
(The writer is senior leader of BJP)