The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Wednesday said the general elections will have to be held according to the current demarcation of constituencies if the national census does not conclude by September, DawnNews reported.
Addressing the National Assembly's Standing Committee for Parliamentary Affairs, Zafar Iqbal, the ECP additional secretary for training, research and evaluation, said it is crucial to conclude the population census by September this year if constituency boundaries are to be remapped for the upcoming general elections.
"If the census does not conclude by September, the upcoming election will not be held on the basis of newly-demarcated districts," Hussain said.
The statement came after a suicide bombing attack on a census team early the same day, in which at least four soldiers and two civilians lost their lives.
The Army chief, while condoling the loss of lives, said following the attack that the census would go ahead as scheduled. The Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) also issued a statement saying the data collection process would continue as planned, Geo News reported.
“The census proceedings will not be affected by the terrorist attack in Lahore,” the Bureau said in its statement, noting that: "The purpose of the attack apparently was to spread fear within the enumerators and other staff."