PESHAWAR: The Election Commission of Pakistan on Wednesday declared that of the 9,202 polling stations set up for the upcoming local government polls in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 2,507 were the most sensitive and 4,168 sensitive.

According to it, only 2,528 polling stations are ‘normal’.

The LG elections are scheduled to be held on Dec 19 in 17 districts of the province and on Jan 16 in the remaining districts.

The details released by the ECP showed that Peshawar had the highest number of sensitive polling stations in the province i.e. 860, while out of the total of 1,248 polling stations, 165 were the most sensitive and 224 normal.

Nowshera district has the highest number of the most sensitive polling stations in the province i.e. 354. Of a total of 558 polling stations in the district, the sensitive and normal ones are 148 and 58, respectively.

Charsadda district has most of the normal polling stations in the province i.e. 425. Of a total of 732 polling stations, 307 have been declared sensitive.

The ECP also identified 297 of a total of 354 polling stations in Khyber tribal district as sensitive and 57 normal. However, no polling station in Charsadda and Khyber tribal districts are the most sensitive.

In Mohmand tribal district, 58 of a total of 195 polling stations are the most sensitive, 80 sensitive and 57 normal, while 579 of Mardan district’s 1,051 polling stations have been declared sensitive, 241 the most sensitive and 231 normal.

In Swabi district, out of a total of 762 polling stations, 335 have been declared sensitive, 175 the most sensitive and 252 normal, while of 487 polling stations in Kohat district, 71 are the most sensitive, 199 sensitive and 216 normal.

The ECP identified 193 polling stations as the most sensitive, 91 sensitive and 86 normal in Karak district; 23 the most sensitive, 110 sensitive and 77 normal in Hangu district; 208 most sensitive, 178 sensitive and 135 normal in Bannu district; 122 the most sensitive, 163 sensitive and 124 normal in Lakki Marwat district; 200 the most sensitive, 314 sensitive and 262 normal in Dera Ismail Khan district; 60 the most sensitive, 45 sensitive and 92 normal in Tank district; 278 the most sensitive, 219 sensitive and 97 normal in Haripur district; 251 the most sensitive, 120 sensitive and 25 normal in Buner district, and 110 the most sensitive, 143 sensitive and 109 normal in Bajaur tribal district.

An ECP official told Dawn that a committee comprising the relevant deputy commissioner, district police officer and district election officers decided the sensitivity criteria for polling stations.

He said that the political situation of an area and other factors were considered while determining the polling station’s sensitivity.

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government had announced on Tuesday that it would deploy over 77,000 police personnel to guard 9,000 polling stations for the Dec 19 local body elections in 17 districts of the province.

It had announced the placing of polling stations in the categories of A, B and C and said nine police officials would be deployed to polling stations of Category A, five to those of Category B and three to those of Category C.

The government had said that the polling stations of high sensitivity as well as those in high population density areas were placed in Category A.

Besides the police personnel, quick response force personnel will also be deployed in those districts on the polling day.

Published in Dawn, December 16th, 2021

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