DERA ISMAIL KHAN/BAJAUR: Police devised a robust security plan to ensure peaceful by-election on National Assembly seat, NA-44, to be held in Dera Ismail Khan on April 21.

In this regard, a workshop was organised for police officers regarding security duty during by-election. The participants of the workshop were directed to follow code of conduct devised by Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

They were told that no unauthorised person would be allowed to enter the polling station. Presiding officer will have the authority of a magistrate. No armed person will be allowed inside a polling station or its gate.

Policemen were told to closely monitor suspicious individuals and treat voters with honour. They were directed to cooperate with polling staff.

Arrangements finalised for April 21 by-polls

In Bajaur, arrangements have been finalised for holding by-election in free, fair and peaceful manner.

“We have completed all the arrangements to by-election on two constituencies NA-8 and PK-22 in free, fair, transparent and peaceful way,” said Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Anwarul Haq.

He told Dawn that polling material would be dispatched to polling stations on Saturday. He said that 366 polling stations were established in both the constituencies.

He said that 88 polling stations, mostly located in mountain areas, were declared the most sensitive. He added that special security arrangements were being made for the most sensitive stations.

Mr Haq said that CCTV cameras were installed at most of polling stations to monitor any unlawful and harmful activity. He said that some violations of code of conduct by candidates were reported that were handled on the spot by district monitoring officer and staffers of ECP.

On Thursday, several poll candidates arranged corner meetings and gatherings in different areas of the district despite rain.

Sources told Dawn that some of the poll candidates had hired several groups of women to seek vote from female voters in their constituencies. They added that it was for the first time in the history of Bajaur that candidates were focusing on women voters during election campaign.

The poll candidates also demanded of the district police chief to enhance security during their campaign after a bomb attack on PPP candidate Akhunzada Chattan on Wednesday.

According to a statement, a group of election candidates for both NA-8 and PK-22 called on DPO Sajad Ahmed at his office and asked him to enhance their security. The DPO welcomed the suggestions of candidates and assured them of implementing the same immediately.

He asked them to keep close contact with him while facing any hurdle in their ongoing election campaign.

Published in Dawn, April 19th, 2024

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