Nineteen petitions have been filed in the Madhya Pradesh High Court raising doubts over the functioning of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and challenging the victory of some Bharatiya Janata Party leaders, including Pragya Singh Thakur, in the Lok Sabha election.
Of these, 17 petitions were filed by Congress candidates who lost the general election, while two were moved by state-based voters.
Rakesh Dixit, a Bhopal-based journalist, who filed the election petition in his capacity as a voter has challenged the election of Pragya Thakur alleging that she whipped up communal passions and indulged in corrupt practice to win the polls, his counsel Arvind Srivastava told PTI.
During the Lok Sabha poll campaign, Thakur delivered speeches on religious lines and thus, violated Section 123 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, he claimed.
Another voter, Raj Kumar Chauhan, filed the petition challenging BJP MP Riti Pathak's win from Sidhi. He has raised doubt over the functioning of the EVMs.
"Our client has stated that batteries of 99 per cent EVMs remained charged when they were opened for counting of votes on May 23," Chauhan's counsels Sanjay Agrawal and Anuj Agrawal said.
It appears only 1 per cent of the battery of EVMs was discharged in the process of polling of votes, which seems unbelievable, they said.
Sanjay Agrawal said the Congress' agent, Gulab Singh, earlier complained to the Election Commission about this but no action was taken.
Besides, 17 unsuccessful candidates also moved the High Court with their respective pleas. Among them, Congress leader and former Union Minister Kantilal Bhuria, who lost from Ratlam, filed a petition against BJP MP Guman Singh Damor, alleging the latter indulged in corrupt practices to win in the general election.
The other unsuccessful candidates in their petitions complained about the malfunctioning of EVMs.
In the Lok Sabha polls, BJP won 28 out of the total 29 seats in Madhya Pradesh.