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Kerala

Opposition allegation on EVMs absurd : Venkaiah Naidu  

Thursday, Apr 13, 2017,15:37 IST By anju A A A

Thiruvananthapuram | Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu today termed as ‘absurd’ the allegation by the Congress and other opposition parties about tampering of EVMs and said the charge would ‘boomerang’ on them.

The Congress was inventing issues to cover up their failures and to prevent the BJP from celebrating its victory, Naidu told reporters here.

“Devoid of issues, they (opposition parties) try to invent issues and their excuse for their defeat is the charge against EVM,” Naidu said.

Referring to the memorandum submitted to the President yesterday by opposition parties, Naidu said the charges levelled by them would apply to the Congress and the previous UPA regime headed by it.

Taking a dig at the Congress, Naidu said they forgot the fact that they had won the elections in 2004, 2009, when EVMs were used. When they won, EVM was right, now when the BJP has won they say there was some fault, he said.

The Congress was taking decisions even without consulting their senior leaders and party Chief Ministers, he said referring to the views expressed by former Union Minister Veerappa Moily on the EVM issue.

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has also questioned Congress leadership’s stand on the voting machines, he said asking the Congress and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to approach the Election Commission to prove their charge that EVM can be tampered with.

On the allegations relating to the lynching of a dairy farmer in Alwar in Rajasthan and similar incidents, Naidu said law and order was a state subject.

“They are blaming the Central government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the incidents. Can anybody blame CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury for violent incidents, if any, in Kerala?”, he asked.

On the charge that the NDA government was “arbitrarily bypassing Parliament and other institutions”, he said Congress and other Opposition parties have disrupted the functioning of Rajya Sabha and Parliament.

“They have a programme– disrupt, divert, debate and get defeated, they have the 4-D programme. But we have 3-D programme– discuss, debate and decide,” he said.

On the use of extra constitutional authority, Naidu said under the NDA, “the Prime Minister presides and Prime Minister decides and he follows a cooperative federalism.”

“But in UPA regime. PM presides and Madam decides. That was the universal talk,” he said in veiled reference to Sonia Gandhi.

On the freedom of Press, Naidu said it was Congress that had declared emergency and gagged the media. Even reports of leaders making derogatory remarks against Prime Minister do appear in the media, he said.

Opposition, more particularly the Congress and Communists, were obstructing the growth of the country, he alleged, adding they were also obstructing passage of important bills.

Naidu said the BJP would focus on winning the confidence of minority communities and remove misconceptions about the party.

Referring to a BJP youth wing leader’s announcement of a bounty of Rs 11 lakh on West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Naidu said the BJP had condemned it and taken action.

However, he said the Congress never took action against those who had made derogatory remarks against persons like Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “It is clear case of double standard,” he said.