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Rahul Gandhi enters EVM debate following Elon Musk's warning on hacking risk

The tech entrepreneur Elon Musk has ignited a dispute concerning the security of EVMs by stating that, "while small, the risk of being hacked is still too high."

Reported by:  PTC News Desk  Edited by:  Annesha Barua -- June 16th 2024 03:55 PM
Rahul Gandhi enters EVM debate following Elon Musk's warning on hacking risk

Rahul Gandhi enters EVM debate following Elon Musk's warning on hacking risk

PTC News Desk: Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi called electronic voting machines (EVMs) in India a "black box" on Sunday, citing a news article that sparked a furor over the outcome of the Mumbai North West Lok Sabha seat. This came after tech billionaire Elon Musk called for the elimination of EVMs.

"EVMs are a "black box" in India; no one is permitted to examine them closely. Regarding our electoral process's transparency, grave concerns are being expressed," Rahul Gandhi tweeted on X.

"When institutions lack accountability, democracy ends up becoming a sham and prone to fraud," he continued, sharing a clip of a news story claiming that the winning candidate's family was using a phone connected to electronic voting machines.

Mangesh Pandilkar has been charged for allegedly using a cell phone at a counting center on June 4. Pandilkar is the brother-in-law of Ravindra Waikar, who won Mumbai North West Lok Sabha MP by 48 votes. According to Mid-Day, Pandilkar was the one who used the cell phone to produce the OTP required to unlock the EVM machine at the NESCO Center. According to the article, a police official stated that the phone has been submitted to forensics for review of call logs in order to determine whether it was used for any other reason.

"Despite the fact that this is a massive scam, the @ECISVEEP keeps sleeping. This election result swindle will be the largest since the Chandigarh mayor election if ECI doesn't intervene, and it will go to court. "This arrogance needs to be dealt with," Priyanka Chaturvedi, a Shiv Sena (UBT) MP, wrote on X.

"Remarkably, or not, the Entirely Compromised-election commission, has refused to share CCTV footage of the counting center," Sena UBT leader Aditya Thackeray stated. I suppose it's an attempt to prevent another Chandigarh incident.

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Elon Musk, meantime, started a discussion by casting doubt on the security of EVMs. Electronic voting devices ought to be banned. Even with the little chance of being hacked by AI or humans, the risk is still too great," he wrote on X.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, a former Union minister and leader of the BJP, was driven to assert that secure digital hardware is feasible as a result.

Indian EVMs are made to order, safe, and disconnected from all networks and media. They don't have Bluetooth, WiFi, or the Internet. i.e., there's no opening. controllers that are factory programmed and cannot be reprogrammed.

Musk was even extended an opportunity by Chandrasekhar to take a course on designing and constructing safe electronic voting devices.

Musk, however, reiterated his worries, stating that "anything can be hacked."

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- With inputs from agencies

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