LAHORE: Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar on Friday said that the recently held July 2018 general elections were transparent and free and there were no reports of rigging.

Addressing a seminar in connection with the National Voters' Day at the Governor's House here, he said the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had worked diligently to conduct elections honestly and impartially, adding that a better system than the Google was employed by the ECP to hold general elections 2018.

The Punjab Governor said no progress could be made without transfer of power to the grassroots level, adding that it was unfortunate that powers were transferred to the provinces under the devolution of power plan but these powers were not relocated to the local government representatives in the provinces.

Ch Sarwar said Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government was bringing about changes in the local government system in the province under which the local government institutions would be provided economic and administrative autonomy while 30 percent of the development funds would be allocated for the village councils.

Provincial Election Commissioner, members ECP Justice (Retd) Altaf Ibrahim Qureshi, Justice (Retd) Nusrat Javed Iqbal, government functionaries, representatives from the non governmental organisations (NGOs) and a large number of members of the Civil Society attended the seminar.

The Governor said the National Voters' Day was observed to create awareness about the importance of casting vote so that people should cast their votes and use their right to franchise and elect their own representatives. He said under the new laws a voter could cast vote on the given permanent or temporary residential address on the national identity card

Ch Sarwar urged the citizens to get their voters data verified by December 31 as a national duty. He called upon political parties, members of the civil society, NGOs and the media to launch campaigns regarding awareness on the importance of casting vote.

The Punjab Governor said it was praiseworthy that the ECP had connected the polling stations to the Google through the use of modern technology during the recently held general elections in the country adding that ECP would introduce new technology for the conduct of transparent elections in the country.

He hailed the ECP for providing the expatriates opportunity to cast their votes through Internet voting during the recently held by polls in the province.

Later, first-ever council Mayor of Hanslow called on Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar at the Governor's House while visiting foreign wrestlers also met the Governor in separate meetings.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2018