Old Video of Storage of VVPAT Slips Falsely Shared as BJP Manipulating VVPAT Slips…

False Political

The largest electoral exercise in the world began last week with the first phase of voting for the Lok Sabha elections. The first phase, which concluded on April 19, 2024, recorded a voter turnout of 65% across 102 seats. During elections, we have witnessed in the past that old and unrelated videos of EVM machines are shared to claim election fraud. We have debunked many claims related to such videos in the past, which you can read by clicking here and here.

A user on X (formerly known as Twitter), Banwari Lal Bairwa, shared a video on the platform claiming that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is manipulating the Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT). He alleges that after polling concluded on April 19, BJP workers can be seen entering rooms containing EVMs, and despite full security measures, they are replacing the VVPATs with paper slips containing their symbol.

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The caption of the post in Hindi is as follows: 19 तारीख में जो चुनाव हुआ चुनाव के बाद एवं जहां फुल सिक्योरिटी में रखी जाती है वहां एवं से वीवीपीएटी से पर्ची चुराई जा रही है और भारतीय जनता पार्टी अपनी पर्ची डलवा रही है। The translation of the above is as follows: “After the polling on 19th and that too at the place where VVPAT slips are stored under full security, VVPAT slips are being stolen and BJP is replacing them with their own slips.”

However, when we investigated the video, we found that the video is old and is not related to the ongoing Lok Sabha elections. 

Fact Check

We did a Google reverse image search on a screenshot of the viral video and found that the video is available on X since December 2022. An X user, Shenaz had posted the viral video on 13 December 2022 and claimed that the video is from a strong room in Bhavnagar, Gujarat. 

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The user claims that BJP workers in Bhavnagar are seen manipulating the VVPAT slips and ensuring a landslide victory for the party. However, the official X account of Collector and District Magistrate, Bhavnagar had responded to the tweet. The District Collector has posted a screenshot that explains the process seen in the video. According to them, the video shows a regular process in which the VVPAT slips are removed from the dropbox and collected in black envelopes which are then sealed. Thus, ruling out any malicious activity.

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The screenshot posted by the official X handle of Collector and District Magistrate, Bhavnagar is a part of Election Commission’s instructions on use of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) with voter verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) system. The instructions related to Removal of VVPAT slips from VVPATs after completion of Counting of Votes published on the ECI website on 4th May 2022.

The instructions clearly mention that the VVPAT paper slips shall be taken out from the drop box of VVPAT and kept in a paper envelope made of thick black paper polling station wise; it shall be sealed using red wax with the bilingual secret seal of the Commission provided to the Returning Officer. The same thing can be seen in a video where the VVPAT slips are being taken out of the VVPAT drop box and placed in a thick black paper envelope. 

However, it is not clear when and where this video was taken. Even though, the video is claimed to be from Bhavnagar, there is no official confirmation of the same. Boom had done a fact-check on this video in 2022 and found that the video is showing a process laid down by the ECI. Speaking to Boom, the then Collector and District Election Officer of Bhavnagar, D.K. Parekh had said, “We have followed the process laid down by the Election Commission. To maintain transparency during the election, we videograph this process and even invite the candidates to be present during the same.”

We spoke to an official with the Kerala State Election Commission who told us that the video shows the process of removing and storing the VVPAT slips from the VVPAT machine. He said, “No suspicious activity is seen in the video. After the polling is over, the machines are stored in high security environment and it is not possible to perform any such activities as claimed on social media platforms. The VVPAT slips are removed from the machine and stored in thick black envelopes and sealed as per ECI’s guidelines.”


Our investigation has revealed that the claim made about the viral video of the EVM is false. The video is not related to the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, which commenced on April 19, 2024. Originally shared in December 2022, the video was purported to be from Bhavnagar, Gujarat. However, the district collector of Bhavnagar had refuted this claim at the time, clarifying that the video depicts the routine process of removing VVPAT slips from VVPAT machines, as per the Election Commission of India’s guidelines.

The exact time and location of the video’s recording remain unclear. Nonetheless, it is evident that the video bears no relation to the ongoing Lok Sabha Elections.

(With Inputs from Deepa M.)


Title:Old Video of Storage of VVPAT Slips Falsely Shared as BJP Manipulating VVPAT Slips…

Fact Check By: Harish Nair 

Result: False