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Delimitation of constituencies to start from Jan 15: ECP

23 December, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: ECP Secretary Babar Yaqub Fateh Muhammad said on Friday that delimitation of constituencies would start on Jan 15 and complete by May 3.

Briefing reporters after a meeting of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), he said five delimitation committees had been formed — one for each province and the fifth for Islamabad and Fata.

He said various aspects and requirements of delimitation were discussed at the meeting. The commission sought maps and relevant data from the Statistics Division and provincial governments by Jan 10, 2018.

The top official of the commission said that CCTV cameras would be installed at all sensitive polling stations during the general elections, while provincial governments would use resources for installation of security cameras. He said the process of revision of electoral rolls would begin in the first week of January and electoral rolls would be frozen on May 5, 2018.

He said there were 7.5 million CNIC holders who had not been registered as voters. The ECP has decided to carry out a door-to-door verification exercise, the staff for which has been sought from provinces. He said that work would start in the first week of January and would be completed by end of April.

Earlier, the meeting decided that all revenue boundaries across the country would be frozen immediately till the conclusion of the general polls in 2018 in order to forestall any manipulations based on political considerations within provinces and districts. The high-level meeting was held with Chief Election Commissioner retired Justice Sardar Muhammad Raza in the chair.

A senior official of the ECP told reporters that the decision was taken in the interest of maintaining transparency and to obviate possible altercations between provinces in accordance with their political interests.

The meeting was held as procedural hitches continue to prevent the constitutional amendment bill providing for fresh delimitation on the basis of provisional census results from becoming an act of parliament.

The official said the delay in obtaining the president’s assent to the bill was worrisome as every day that passed by was a loss that the ECP would bear as it struggled to meet challenging targets for the delimitation exercise as well as other arrangements for the general elections.

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