ECP has reminded the lengthy code of conduct for upcoming elections, asking the political parties, candidates and election agents to avoid maligning anyone on the basis of gender, ethnicity, religion or caste. The regulations include forbidding the propagation of any opinion or act to defame judiciary or armed forces. It promotes the participation of women and transgender community in the process and warns political parties against running publicity campaign at the cost of public exchequer. The election body will also make sure no one uses Quranic verses or the sayings of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) for their own publicity.
Moreover, the election body’s meeting decided that army personnel would be deployed both in and outside the polling booths to ensure “maximum security”. Foolproof security will even protect the printing of ballot papers.
Former military dictator Pervez Musharraf forced himself out of the polls by not showing up at the Supreme Court despite assurances by the top judge himself that he won’t be arrested upon his return. He was to appear before court till Thursday 2pm but his lawyer kept on pleading that Musharraf has delayed his plans as he needs more time owing to the country’s “current situation” and Eidul Fitr holidays. Is this the end for Musharraf’s political career? Only time will tell.
Rejecting all objections, the returning officer has paved the way for Maryam Nawaz to take part in the elections from NA-127. She did appear for scrutiny, answered fairly simple questions – easier than those asked by NAB officials – and cleared the formalities. Maryam did all her practice while campaigning for her ailing mother during NA-125 by-poll
On the other hand, NA-147 is surely going to be an interesting battleground. PTI founding leader, now ex-member, Fauzia Kasuri will challenge Arif Alvi from PSP’s platform. MQM-P leader Farooq Sattar is also lined up for the same constituency. It was earlier rumoured that Mustafa Kamal and Sattar will stage a face-off at NA-147, however, Kamal changed his tactics at the eleventh hour. Other notable candidates contesting for this constituency include JI’s Hafiz Naeemur Rehman, PPP’s Abdul Aziz Memon and human rights lawyer Jibran Nasir.
Reports say senior PML-N leader Kh Saad Rafique disclosed his second marriage in his nomination papers after keeping it a secret for over two years. Kh Saad admitted to marrying PTV news anchor Dr Shafaq Hira, hence claiming himself sadiq and ameen
With all the fuss going around that elections could “save the country”, Farooq Sattar has taken a different approach. He believes the public has lost faith in political leaders because of their “false promises”. He highlighted administrative and constitutional amendments, rejecting the idea that election was the only solution to all problems.