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HomePakistanPM sees ‘no possibility’ of delay in polls | The Express Tribune

PM sees ‘no possibility’ of delay in polls | The Express Tribune



ISLAMABAD:

Ruling out the possibility of any delay in general elections, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Wednesday said that the polls would be announced and conducted on time.

The PM’s statement comes amid growing demand from various quarters for immediate announcement of the poll date.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had announced last month that the next general elections would be held in the last week of January – almost three months after the constitutional time frame – but the commission again stopped short of giving a firm date.

The elections were due to be held in November but were delayed due to fresh demarcation of constituencies under a new census. The ECP did not give a definite date for the voting which is considered crucial to salvage a falling economy.

Read more: Polls expected before end of Jan, date pending

Since the dissolution of the assemblies last month, two main political parties – the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) – have consistently been impressing upon the ECP to announce a date for the general elections.

“I don’t see any possibility (of delay in elections). I don’t have any confusion at all. I feel the elections will be announced and conducted on time,” the prime minister said in an interview with a private television channel.

Reiterating his government’s resolve to hold free and fair elections, he said all the registered political parties had legal and constitutional rights to canvass, mobilise people and attract public support.

In an apparent reference to PTI Chairman Imran Khan, he said that the government would not be responsible if someone was legally barred from the political process.

Also read: Border situation won’t affect elections: PM

To a question, he emphasised effective law enforcement, saying that his government, with the cooperation from military leadership, had implemented the existing laws to crack down the illegal currency businesses and hoarders. He also called for the capacity building of the civilian institutions for the implementation of the law.

The prime minister said that the establishment of a democratic system within the political parties was essential for democracy in the country.

To another question, PM Kakar said that he had interacted with all political leaders before assuming the office but never thought of joining any party, though being a citizen, he had the right to join a party or form his own.

Rubbishing the allegations of the caretaker government’s tilt towards the PML-N, he said the political parties usually create such impressions before the elections with a view to attract public support.

The premier appreciated the leadership qualities of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir and said that Pakistan’s future was in capable and committed hands.

To a question, he said that he was comfortable with the military leadership and that the caretaker government had the final say in the decision-making.

Asked whether PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif was victimised, the prime minister said that the questions were always raised about judicial interventions as different parties had varying views on the respective subjects.

On the cypher issue, Kakar said that it was a property of the state and exposing it for other than the prescribed usage was unjustified, though the court has yet to ascertain its illegality.

Lastly, he revealed that in the 2013 and 2018 elections, he had voted for PTI with the intention of finding solutions to Pakistan’s challenges in areas such as infrastructure, the economy, foreign policy, and the country’s international image, not for attacking the GHQ.





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