In light of the recently held Karnataka elections, a video of a mob vandalizing EVM and VVPAT machines is being shared on social media platforms with a claim that these EVMs are found in a BJP leader’s car. Through this article let’s fact-check the claim made in the post.
Claim: Visuals of people destroying EVMs found in BJP leaders’ car, during Karnataka elections.
Fact: These visuals are from the recently held elections in Karnataka. Influenced by rumors that officials were tampering with the EVMs, villagers of Masabinala in Vijayapura district vandalized the electoral material, being carried by the election officials in duty bound vehicles. There is no mention of any political party in the press note released by the Election commission. Hence the claim made in the post is FALSE.
In Karnataka, elections to the state assembly were held on 10 May 2023. According to the primary estimates given by the Election Commission of the state, 72.67% of polling was recorded. There were instances of EVM malfunctioning and violent incidents in some places.
The viral video in question is related to the recently held Karnataka elections. However, these EVMs were not being transported by BJP leaders as claimed in the post. Internet search with relevant keywords yielded news reports that reported the same visuals (here & here).
As per these reports, the visuals are from Masabinala village in Vijayapura district. Influenced by rumors that officials were tampering with the EVMs, villagers vandalized the reserved EVMs being transported in a duty-bound vehicle, and even assaulted an officer.
The State Election Commission released a press note briefing about the polling and the violence reported. According to the Election Commission’s statement, the transportation of the reserved Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) for the Assembly elections was stopped by 100-150 people, while they were being carried in a vehicle by a section officer, from Basavana Begawadi strong room towards Masabinal.
These people attacked the election officials and damaged the election material. Further, the press notes state that 24 accused persons were arrested, and cases were booked under relevant sections. However, there is no mention of any political party in the note.
To sum it up, visuals of mob vandalizing EVMs in Karnataka are falsely attributed to BJP.