8 empty boxes used for carrying VVPAT machines found in shed in Karnataka

Bengaluru: Eight boxes used for carrying Voter-Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines have been found at a temporary shed in a village in Karnataka’s Vijayapura district, state chief electoral officer Sanjiv Kumar said today.

He, however, clarified that the boxes, found in Managuli village yesterday, do not belong to the district or to Election Commission.

“The boxes are without machine and paper and without unique electronic tracking number…the Election Commission will initiate strict action against those who are trying to create confusion,” Kumar said, adding no VVPAT machines were found.

The Deputy Commissioner of the district and the Superintendent of Police conducted on the spot inspection today following reports that empty boxes of VVPAT machines were spotted in the shed.

“These boxes do not belong to Vijayapura district and 2744 VVPATs allotted to the district are safely kept in the strong room,” Kumar said.

An FIR has been registered at Managuli police station and investigation into the matter is on, the CEO said.

Assembly election in Karnataka was held on May 12 which threw up a fractured mandate leading to a bitter political slugfest over government formation in the state.

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