The Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal on Sunday outright rejected the allegations of manipulation of voting results through electronic voting machines (EVMs).
"Critics say the result of electric voting can be changed in the last ten minutes. But it is impossible, not even Einstein can do this job in ten minutes," he told reporters after attending a daylong workshop on capacity building of the Election Commission titled 'Challenges of Using Modern Technology in Elections and Ways to Overcome it,”' in Pabna.
“One of the key benefits of EVMs is its ability to provide enhanced voting security as the digital ballot won't operate if a voter doesn't show up and his or her fingerprint doesn't match,” he said adding that the commission in the last 9-10 months did not receive any objective complaints in this regard.
"A group of people emerged against EVM calling it a 'vote stealing machine' and initially for sometimes I was left in doubts too. Later, I took a long time to investigate the allegations and brought in experts for their opinion. None could show me how rigging is possible with these machines," he said.
Regarding an inclusive election, he warned that all party participation is required to avoid controversy.
"If there is a gap in understanding between the political leaders and the polling centres do not see head-to-head competition, the election will not be called an inclusive one," he explained noting that such an election may end up stirring controversy.
The CEC went on to say, "Executive branch and administration need sincerity [in holding a fair election]. It is the responsibility of the police administration to create an environment where voters can vote without fear. We also have efforts to take the Election Commission to a place of trust.”
He also said, “I believe a lot of people now have confidence in EVMs. Because no one has so far been able to show evidence in the Election Commission or in the court that voting was rigged through EVMs.”