–NADRA spokesman says CNICs, stashed in three bags, had expired in 2010, are useless in 2018 general election
LAHORE: Only a day prior to the 2018 general elections, Lahore police have seized a large number of Computerised National Identity Cards (CNICs) stuffed in three bags in the provincial capital city.
The CNICs were discovered from a dried out drainage in Shafiqabad, Lahore’s NA-125 constituency, by trash pickers in the early hours of the day.
The area falls under the NA-125 constituency of Lahore from where Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s Yasmin Rashid is contesting the election against Pakistan Muslim League–Nawaz’s Waheed Alam.
Spokesperson of the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA), however, claimed that all of the CNICs were valid only before 2010, saying these can’t be used in the upcoming general elections.
The database authority further said that new cards have replaced the old ones, while the voter-lists also comprises photos which are in the updated CNICs.
NADRA further said that they are contacting the police to acquire further information into the discovery. The electoral body has also started a inquiry into the matter.
On Saturday, NADRA, on ECP’s directives, enabled holders of expired CNICs to cast vote. There are at least 106 million registered voters eligible to cast their vote on July 25.
Speaking to reporters, Dr Yasmin Rashid said they have sent their lawyers to the Shafiqabad police station to inquire about the cards that have been discovered, claiming this may constitute as pre-poll rigging.
Later in the day, a two-member NADRA team reached the Shafiqabad police station and launched an inquiry into the incident.
Speaking to the media, SHO Mudassir Rafiq Butt said there were 1,000 cards in the three bags with the majority of them bearing addresses of various areas in Punjab.
Earlier in the day, the police seized a stack of fake ballot papers and arrested five suspects in connection with the fraud in Umerkot, Sindh.
The fake ballot papers were found hidden in a jeep near Pakistan Chowk in the town of Umerkot, and were to be delivered to the PS-52 constituency, police sources said.
On Monday, a presiding officer assigned for election duty at Karachi’s PS-93 constituency was arrested for sending another person as his substitute, ahead of the nationwide polls on July 25.