LAHORE: The Election Commission of Pakistan has asked those aspiring to contest the forthcoming local body polls in Punjab as independents instead of from any political platform to form their electoral groups/panels.

An official of the ECP said here on Thursday that as the Punjab Local Government Ordinance 2021 prescribes holding of the polls on political parties basis, the independent candidates who do not wish to contest the polls from any political party should form their own panels. The registration of these electoral groups with the commission would begin shortly, the official said.

“In-time preparation of forming groups will save them from hassle at the nick of time when the Election Commission will begin registering the electoral groups on specific forms,” he said. The forms would seek details like head of the electoral group, other office-bearers and number of candidates contesting for various seats, etc.

The official said as the constitutional term of the previous local bodies expired on Dec 31, 2021, the ECP is constitutionally bound to hold local polls within 120 days. The ECP has already issued a schedule for demarcation of Village and Neighbourhood Councils.

Published in Dawn, January 28th, 2022

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