A malfunctioning electronic voting machine (EVM) reportedly “transferred” all votes cast to the Congress candidate in Sindhudurg district, in the second incident of its kind on Thursday.
The incident came to light when voters in Padve-mazagaon village complained that when they pressed their chosen candidate’s button, only the Congress light blinked.
Angry voters boycotted the elections for nearly three hours before frantic election officials ordered a replacement EVM and resumed voting around 1 pm.
At least 68 voters claimed that their vote may have been wrongly credited to Congress candidate Nilesh Rane contesting from the Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg constituency in the Konkan region.
A similar incident happened at a polling booth in Pune city when voters found that whichever button was pressed on the EVM, only the Congress light blinked.
Alert voters brought this to the notice of the election officials, who immediately stopped voting.
Voting resumed after a delay of nearly 90 minutes after a new EVM was acquired.
The Election Commission also permitted around 28 voters who had already cast their votes in the malfunctioning EVM to vote afresh.
Political activists of all parties have demanded an extension of voting hours by three hours in Sindhudurg and 90 minutes in Pune to compensate for the time lost due to the defective EVMs.