LAHORE: The electoral watchdog has stepped in to check violations of code of conduct in the by-polls for National Assembly constituency NA-120, Lahore-III, which fell vacant after the Supreme Court disqualified former prime minister Nawaz Sharif elected to the lower house of parliament from here.

Nominees of three major parties – Begum Kulsoom Nawaz of the PML-N, Dr Yasmin Rashid of the PTI and Faisal Mir of the PPP – along with 50 plus other candidates are in the run for the seat.

District Returning Officer for NA-120 Tahir Hasan along with returning officer and other staff held a meeting with Lahore Mayor Mubasher Javed and Punjab Horticulture Authority’s Shahid Khan and directed them to check use of state machinery as well as ‘oversized’ publicity material of various candidates within the limits of the constituency.

Mr Javed was asked [that] no candidate should be allowed to use state resources for his/her election campaign and that all public office-holders, including those at local body level, should be directed to avert taking part in electioneering.

The mayor was also directed to get removed banners, posters, panaflexes and boards over and above the size fixed by the Election Commission while no uplift work should be carried out in the constituency until the polling day falling on Sept 17.

Mr Javed assured the DRO that deputy mayors and councillors would be immediately asked to follow the ECP code of conduct while relevant MPs would also be approached for the purpose, says a press release issued by the commission.

The PHA deputy director was directed to remove electioneering material that’s in violation of the code of the conduct from the main arteries of NA-120.

The monitoring teams deputed by the ECP reported details of the publicity material displayed at Chauburji Chowk, Rajgarh, Sanda, Sessions Court, Civil Secretariat, Kareem Park, Lakshmi and Mozang areas that was over and above the size allowed by the commission.

Published in Dawn, August 25th, 2017

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