Pak electoral body formed committee records statements amid rigging allegations | World News - Hindustan Times
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Pakistan electoral body formed committee records statements amid rigging allegations

ANI |
Feb 21, 2024 02:41 PM IST

The committee led by a senior member of ECP recorded statements of DROs and RO of 13 National Assembly constituencies and 26 provincial assembly constituencies

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) formed high level committee to probe into allegations of former Rawalpindi Commissioner recorded statements of District Returning Officers (DROs) and Returning Officers (ROs) of concerned constituencies, ARY News reported citing sources on Wednesday.

Polling staff count ballots after the end of the voting at a polling station during a general election, in Hyderabad, Pakistan. (Reuters)
Polling staff count ballots after the end of the voting at a polling station during a general election, in Hyderabad, Pakistan. (Reuters)

According to the report, the committee led by a senior member of ECP recorded statements of DROs and RO of 13 National Assembly constituencies and 26 provincial assembly constituencies of Rawalpindi division.

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The sources privy to the development said that Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) also submitted the transcript of former Rawalpindi Commissioner Liaquat Ali Chatha's presser, accusing ECP and Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa of involvement in the 'election rigging'.

ARY News reported citing sources that DROs and ROs have also submitted written statements to the committee. The high-level committee has started the compilation of its report which would be submitted to the ECP on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is intensifying its call for the immediate resignation of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja, holding him responsible for the alleged failure to ensure free, fair, and transparent general elections in 2024, ARY News reported.

Accusing the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) of failing in its responsibility, Khan called for an investigation into Liaquat Ali Chatha's allegations and the conduct of the February 8 elections. He asserted that CEC Raja's resignation would contribute to a non-controversial inquiry into the reported irregularities on February 8.

Liaquat Ali Chatha's shocking admission of involvement in election rigging added another layer of controversy to the already disputed polls. Chatha implicated himself and accused the ECP and Chief Justice Qazi Faez Isa of being involved in the alleged rigging, a claim denied by both the ECP and the Chief Justice.

In response to Chatha's allegations, the ECP flatly rejected the accusations, stating that neither the ECP nor its officials instructed the Rawalpindi commissioner to alter election results. The ECP clarified that commissioners of any division do not have a direct role in conducting elections, as they are neither District Returning Officers (DROs), Returning Officers (ROs), nor Presiding Officers (POs).

Following the press conference, Liaquat Ali Chatha was transferred, and Rawalpindi Development Authority DG Saif Anwar Jappa was assigned the additional charge, ARY News reported.

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