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ISLAMABAD: The election organisation has asked the government personnel and their immediate family members, who intend to use the postal ballot facility for by-elections on 23 seats of the Assemblies, to cast their votes not later than April 2, 2024.

This facility, under the law, has been extended to the persons in government service, members of armed forces and their spouses and children, as well as persons with physical disabilities, and persons who are imprisoned or held in custody, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) said on Friday.

The aforementioned persons are eligible to vote through postal ballot under Section 93(1) of the Elections Act 2017.

By-elections are scheduled on 23 seats of the Assemblies on April 21, comprising of 19 seats vacated by those candidates who had won more than one seats in the last month’s general elections, and four seats that saw elections postponement due to the deaths of contesting candidates.

The by-polls would be held on the six seats of National Assembly, 12 seats of Punjab Assembly, two seats each of Balochistan Assembly and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, and one Sindh Assembly seat.

Of these seats, the general elections that were scheduled on February 8, on National Assembly’s seat NA-8 and KPA seat PK-22, were delayed due to the killing of a candidate who was contesting the polls on both these seats. Polls were also postponed on KPA seat PK-91 and PA seat PP-266 due to the deaths of the respective contestants ahead of February 8 general polls.

The remaining 19 seats that have been vacated by candidates who won more than one seats in the general polls, and where by-polls are being held, are: NA-44, NA-119, NA-132, NA-196, NA-207, PP-22, PP-32, PP-36, PP-54, PP-93, PP-139, PP-147, PP-149, PP-158, PP-164, PP-290, PB-20, PP-22 and PS-80.

The ECP is under fire from public and political circles as well as international stakeholders over allegedly massive rigging in February 8 general polls. The electoral body has rejected these allegations.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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