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The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) announced on Thursday that all district returning officers (DROs), returning officers (ROs) and presiding officers (POs) have been given powers of Magistrate of the First Class until the final election results are announced.

Provision of the powers means that all DROs, ROs and POs will have the right to instantly award punishments to people if they find them violating the law.

Earlier today, the ECP also announced that voters will not be allowed to bring their mobile phones to the polling stations.

The commission also responded to criticism and clarified that security forces are being given the same powers as in every other election.