A Pakistani resident casts his ballot at a polling station during general election.–File Photo by AFP
KARACHI: Statistics showing abnormally high turnout confirm reports of rigging at several polling stations across Karachi.
In at least five polling stations of the city, the number of votes polled far exceeds the registered voters, according to data from elections observer group FAFEN.
Polling stations with over 100 per cent votes polled include Orangi Town, Model Colony, Malir Colony, and Shah Faisal Colony. The National Assembly constituencies affected by the apparent malpractice include NA-242, NA-256 and NA-257.
According to the statistics obtained by Dawn.com, 2508 and 1484 votes were polled at NA-242 Orangi Town’s polling station (PS) 80 and 2, while the respective number of registered voters was 1349 and 1230.
At station 151 of Model Colony and stations 63 of Shah Faisal Colony(NA-256), 3233 and 2495 votes were polled against a total of 2114 and 2405 registered voters.
Malir colony’s station 129 (NA-257) also witnessed an impossibly high number of voters, where 2495 votes were polled against 2405 registered voters.
At least four other polling stations (PS-37, 38, 39 and 40) in Landhi area falling under NA-255, also appeared to have been affected by irregularities, with the number votes polled falling between 93 to 98 per cent of registered voters.
In total, data provided by FAFEN shows at least 32 polling stations with over 80 per cent votes polled, which it says are abnormally high numbers.
The Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) had over 900 trained election observers monitoring polling in Karachi, and more than 41,000 observers across the country.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has taken notice of widespread reports of rigging in Karachi, and has ordered re-polling at 43 stations in Karachi’s NA-250 constituency in 10 day’s time.
“We will conduct re-polling where we receive substantial evidence of rigging or irregularities,” Secretary ECP Ishtiaq Ahmed told reporters in Islamabad.
The ECP has asked the civil society members to submit evidence of rigging or malpractice to the ECP.