Voting For Pakistan By-Polls Ends Amid Cellular Network Suspension: Report

Elections were held for five seats in the National Assembly. (Representational)

Islamabad:

The voting for 21 national and provincial seats ended amid the temporary suspension of cellular services in “specific districts” of Punjab and Balochistan provinces, which authorities claim were steps to “safeguard” the electoral process, Dawn reported on Sunday.

Elections were held for five seats in the National Assembly, twelve seats in the Punjab Assembly, two seats in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, and two seats in the Balochistan Assembly, according to the Election Commission of Pakistan.

According to the Pakistan-based news website, the by-elections were held under the umbrella of violence and disruption in the network services across the polling stations.

In Sheikhupura’s PP-139, the polling process was temporarily stopped after a “firing incident”.

In a statement, the Punjab election commissioner’s office said that due to a “firing incident” at a polling station (Government Primary School Nizampura), the polling process had been stopped.

However, it had later resumed after the police controlled the situation, the statement added.

In Lahore, at polling station number 171 (Lahore College), workers of the Pakistan Tehreeke-e-Insaf (PTI) and Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) coalition had a fight with those of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on the issue of setting up polling camps. The argument was then brought to a conclusion with the help of police intervention.

Reports of arguments also emerged from various political leaders.

Istehkam-i-Pakistan Party’s (IPP’s) Shoaib Siddiqui said there were reports of a face-off in Union Council 184, Dawn reported.

Separately, SIC’s Mian Shahzad Farooq claimed that his party workers were being arrested in NA-119 and that the polling agent had been forced out of the returning officer’s office after he went there to file a complaint.

Across Lahore, 24 superintendents, 45 senior deputy police officers (SDPOs), 168 inspectors, station house officers (SHOs), and investigation in-charges will serve their duties during the by-elections, Dawn reported.

A total of 195 pickets were established at Lahore’s entry and exit points while security was on “high alert”.

Earlier on Saturday, the interior ministry had allowed the suspension of mobile internet services to “maintain law and order” in 13 districts and tehsils in Punjab, Dawn reported.

It should be mentioned that mobile and internet services were also shut down during the February 8 general elections. Meanwhile, access to social media platform X has been disrupted since Feb 17, when the former Rawalpindi commissioner accused the chief election commissioner and chief justice of Pakistan of being involved in rigging.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

SOURCE

Leave a Comment

NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ NcdeQ