HomeSource ARYI-voting, EVMs facilities cannot be provided in elections: ECP

I-voting, EVMs facilities cannot be provided in elections: ECP

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has excused from providing i-voting and electronic voting machines (EVMs) facilities in the Punjab local government (LG) elections, ARY News reported on Tuesday.

The chief election commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja held a high-level session to review the matters related to the Punjab LG polls and recommended amendments to the Punjab LG Act 2022 and rules.

In its declaration, the ECP demanded the government to amend Punjab LG Act 2022 and its rules. It stated that the LG Act restricts the commission to hold Punjab LG polls with EVMs and i-voting facilities. The commission said that amendments to the LG Act are inevitable to avoid the contradictions in the rules and the act.

READ: ECP seeks amendments for i-voting, EVMs

The commission clarified that EVMs and i-voting facilities cannot be provided in the elections. The declaration added that the Punjab government amended the LG Act’s Rules 35(4) besides providing the procedure of voting under the Election Act 2017.

The LG polls will be held after the amendments by the provincial government as the commission completed its preparations for local government elections in Islamabad and Punjab and the registration process will be concluded by July 17.

The ECP also urged the interior ministry to issue a notification regarding the number of reserved seats in Islamabad by July 12 besides providing rules for setting the limit for a candidate’s election expenses.

READ: ECP terms exclusion of PTI from political parties list ‘mistake’

Additionally, the election commission wrote a letter to the caretaker Punjab government, seeking amendments to the LG Act for addressing the legal complications regarding EVMs and i-voting.

Yesterday, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) decided to write a letter to the provincial government for bringing amendments related to i-voting and electronic voting machines (EVMs).

It is pertinent to mention here that the Senate had passed Election Act Amendment Bill 2022 with a majority vote to reverse the use of EVMs and voting rights of overseas Pakistanis amid protest from opposition lawmakers in May last year.

Law Minister Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar presented the bills in the House for voting as then PTI Parliamentary Leader Shahzad Waseem called for sending them to the concerned standing committees for further discussion.

However, the Senate chairman tabled them for voting which resulted in them sailing through the Upper House with a majority vote.

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