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Bharat Jodo Yatra: Rahul Gandhi says that polls can be rigged through social media

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Highlighting that polls can be rigged through social media, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi said on Wednesday that if social media companies want they can make any party win an election. He also said, without naming any party, that communal violence has been planted as a strategic weapon to cause disharmony in the society by one ideology and its leaders.

“Even if the EVM [electronic voting machine] is secure, Indian elections may be rigged through social media. If large social media companies want, they can make any party win an election. Systematic bias is being applied there and my social media handles are a live example of it,” the Congress MP said during Bharat Jodo Yatra in Maharashtra’s Washim.

A statement by the Congress said during the meeting, the representatives raised relevant issues like political democracy and communal harmony, among others.

Speaking about political democracy, social activist Patkar said it is not confined to the doubts surrounding the EVMs, but also means that a rigorous manifestation of VVPAT (voter verifiable paper audit trail) is a must.

Patkar highlighted the relevance of strengthening gram sabhas and local bodies, saying Mahatma Gandhi had envisioned it, while also laying emphasis on reforming laws like the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and labour laws for the benefit of farmers.

Irfaan Engineer, a human rights activist, raised issues relating to communal disharmony, polarization and hate-mongering.

Gandhi responded by saying, “Communal violence has been planted as a strategic weapon to cause disharmony in society by one ideology and its leaders.”

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