Election Commission formed monitoring teams for cantonment board elections

The teams will take action on violations of the code of conduct and send their reports to the provincial election commissioner and the election commission Islamabad. They will also monitor the candidates' election campaigns and remove oversized banners, hoardings, posters, etc. from the cantonment boundaries. In Lahore, a monitoring team visited Walton Cantonment and took down all oversized banners and hoardings in its boundaries

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ISLAMABAD/LAHORE: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has turned down the ruling PTI’s request for deployment of troops during the local government polls of 42 cantonment boards across the country scheduled to take place on September 12.

Sources said the ECP held a meeting, presided over by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja, to decide the request.

The participants were of the view that there was no need to deploy the military for the elections as best security arrangements had been made for them.

A heavy contingent of Rangers, FC and police would be deployed for the security of the polls.

The sources added that the commission had informed the PTI of its decision in writing.

The commission has also formed monitoring teams for the cantonment board elections.

The teams will take action on violations of the code of conduct and send their reports to the provincial election commissioner and the election commission Islamabad.

They will also monitor the candidates’ election campaigns and remove oversized banners, hoardings, posters, etc. from the cantonment boundaries.

In Lahore, a monitoring team visited Walton Cantonment and took down all oversized banners and hoardings in its boundaries

The PTI had asked the commission to deploy army troops inside and outside the polling stations for maintaining “law and order” and “ensuring transparency” in the elections.

The demand for the deployment of troops was made by PTI chief organiser Senator Saifullah Khan Nyazee through a letter to the CEC.

In the letter, Nyazee informed the CEC that most PTI chapters had warned him about a “potentially explosive environment” built around the election campaigns for elections. “The past record of such elections without the security provided by the armed forces of Pakistan is not reassuring either, especially in large metropolitan cities like Karachi and Lahore,” he wrote.

“In the absence of electronic voting machines, avenues are open for electoral fraud and coercive methods adopted by the local political forces, ranging from fake ballots to the wrong compilation of results,” he added.

“In the interest of free and fair elections, it is our considered opinion that army shall be requested to assist in maintaining law and order inside and outside of the polling stations.”

There are 1,559 candidates contesting the polls to become general members in 219 wards of 42 cantonment boards of the country.

A total of 918 candidates are contesting the polls in 119 wards of 20 cantonment boards in Punjab; 422 in 54 wards of eight cantonment boards in Sindh; 173 candidates in 37 wards of 11 cantonment boards in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and 46 candidates in nine wards of three cantonment boards in Balochistan.

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