MONTREAL, Jan 8: A list of some 80 million eligible voters in the upcoming general election is being stored on computers in Canada for safekeeping, the company stashing the data told AFP on Monday.

The computers are nestled in a nondescript block along the busy Trans-Canada highway in Montreal, said Hayee Bokhari, president of Cronomagic, which was contracted by the Election Commission of Pakistan to create an online database.

“Infrastructure in Pakistan is not secure enough because electricity over there is a big thing,” said Mr Bokhari.

“For them to make it run 24/7 without interruption was only possible either in the United States, in Canada or in


Following the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto on December 27, Pakistan pushed the elections to February 18, from January 8.

The day of her death, the election commission had planned to launch the website to allow voters to check to see if they are registered for the ballot, but held off and “just today they put everything online,” said Pakistan-born Bokhari.

The computerised electoral rolls, in Urdu language, may also be consulted by political parties, international election observers and others at the commission’s website (—AFP