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Har Pakistani Ki Khabar

Elections in KP might be delayed after those in Punjab.

ISLAMABAD: The News reported on Friday that the delay of the elections in Punjab by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) may mean that the elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa won’t take place until October 8.
Initially slated to take place on April 30, the poll was unexpectedly moved by the electoral commission on Wednesday to October 8.
Experts believe that this decision means that the KP elections will now take place alongside those for other provincial legislatures and the National Assembly.
It has already been made known that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) would appeal the ECP ruling to the Supreme Court.
When contacted by The News, a senior ECP official said, “As mandated, the Election Commission and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Haji Ghulam Ali held consultations, but instead of giving a date for polls, he dispatched a lengthy letter to explain the law and order, security, and financial situation in the province.
The governor announced that the province’s general election will take place on May 28.
But, he did not publicly provide a date during his meeting at the ECP. Thereafter, he wrote to the commission and urged them to address a number of issues before holding elections.
The official stated that practically all political parties may not be particularly interested in the KP elections due to the security situation, since the political players are in Punjab, while citing media reports and the governor’s letter.
After Punjab Governor Muhammad Baligh Ur Rehman’s refusal to participate in the process that resulted in the setting of the province’s election date, the president recommended two dates for the holding of the vote: April 30 and May 7 (Sundays).
The date of April 30 has been set by President Dr. Arif Alvi.
The commission issued an order to postpone the elections in the province, citing mostly security and law and order-related reasons, after receiving a number of briefings from the Ministries of Defense and Interior, senior military officials, intelligence agencies, the chief secretary of Punjab, and the inspector general of police.
The senior official said, “We did not cancel elections but took the date forward under Section 58 of the Elections Act, 2017 and informed the president accordingly. “We did what was our mandate in respect to Punjab as well as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and beyond that, we can’t do anything.”
The Act’s Section 58 states: “Alteration in Election Programme: Notwithstanding anything contained in Section 57, the Commission may, at any time after the issue of the notification under sub-section (1) of that section, make such alterations in the Election Programme (EP) announced in that notification for different stages of the election or may issue a fresh EP as may, in its opinion, to be recorded in writing, be necessary for the purposes of this Act: Provided that the Commission shall give reasonable notice of any such changes to
When questioned about setting October 8 as the date for Punjab elections alone, another senior official at the commission said that this date could equally be interpreted as the day of the general election to the National Assembly and the four provincial assemblies.
He said that the current National Parliament was established on August 13, 2018, and as such, its final day is August 12. The Election Commission must hold elections within 60 days, however even though October 11 is the day after the deadline, October 8 has been set because it is a Sunday.
After consulting with the commission, the president is required by Section 57 of the Act to declare the date or dates of the general election.
According to Kanwar Dilshad, a former secretary of the Election Commission, the decision made by the electoral body was supported by concrete evidence presented to the commission recently by several stakeholders.
He claimed that the commission had acted on the Constitution and the law to proceed with the given situation.
He noted that the Election Commission had independently changed the election schedule from January 8, 2008, to February 18, 2008, following the murder of former PM Benazir Bhutto.
The date provided by the commission in its ruling for Punjab implies that the general election for the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly would not take place before October 8, he continued.

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