ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has summoned a presiding officer who was allegedly involved in the theft of ballot papers during the recently held by-poll in the NA-240 constituency in Karachi to appear before it on June 22 to explain his position.

The ECP has directed the secretary colleges, government of Sindh, to ensure presence of the accused presiding officer who was performing election duty at polling station No. 87 at Model School DMC, Landhi’s Zaman Abad.

The Commission has also issued notice to Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) chief Mustafa Kamal for allegedly attacking a polling station during the by-election.

A decision to issue notice to PSP Chief had been taken at a meeting of the Commission held here on Friday with Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja.

The meeting that took place a day after violence, mismanagement and abnormally low turnout marred the by-poll in NA-240 noted that confrontation between two political parties — Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and PSP — was being investigated.

Secretary Election Commission Omar Hamid Khan gave briefing on the by-election in NA-240, reviewing untoward incidents, including snatching of ballot papers at various polling stations, including polling stations numbers 51 and 165, breaking of ballot boxes, beating of polling staff and brandishing of weapons.

Meanwhile, the ECP refused to grant permission to the Punjab police chief for transfer of DPOs of Khushab, Hafizabad, Khanewal, Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur.

Published in Dawn, June 19th, 2022

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