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Pakistan Politics Top Stories

Whenever Elections Will be Held, There Will be Dispute over Transparency and Non-Transparency

Karachi: Former Federal Secretary of Election Commission Kanwar Dilshad, in response to the question “Will the caretaker government be able to hold transparent elections?”, said first there should be talk of ensuring that elections would take place, only then we can talk about how transparent elections can take place. But whenever elections will be held, there will be a dispute over whether they are transparent or non-transparent. The caretaker government will make every possible effort for transparent elections but the losing side would declare it to be non-transparent. In the current circumstances and government arrangements, it does not seem that the elections will take place and surprisingly no official stance has come from the caretaker federal government regarding fixing a date.

He said that according to his information, the federal government is considering its legal aspects and will try to get an opinion from the court by filing a constitutional reference in the Supreme Court under Article 86 of the constitution, based on the census and decisions of the Council of Common Interests. In this, the discrepancies between the old and new constituencies will have to be kept in view on the basis of the new census under Article 51 of the constitution, and an attempt will be to find a way in the context of the elections of the two provincial assemblies so that an important step can be taken towards political stability in the country by holding elections of the National Assembly and all four provincial assemblies on the same day.

Former Pakistani Ambassador to the US, Maleeha Lodhi, in response to the question “Can a caretaker government hold transparent elections?” said that the biggest responsibility of the caretaker government is to hold transparent elections in the country, it has no other responsibility. The purpose of not holding elections on time is that the elections are not transparent. The basic reason for this is that any attempt to deviate from the constitutionally stipulated election date will be disastrous for the country and will raise questions regarding the transparency of the elections. The ambiguity has been further increased by the recent digital population census.

According to news reports, the election date could be postponed beyond October so that redistricting can take place. While on the other hand, the economic future is also uncertain. The PDM alliance has left power and has been replaced by the caretaker government, which is essential for holding elections. But there are still clouds of uncertainty regarding elections. Due to the ambiguous stance adopted by the ministers, conjectures are being made as to whether elections will be held on time with transparency. Due to the population census and redistricting, there might be a delay of more than 2 months in the elections, and an attempt to find a justification for this delay within the constitution would be made, which can arise at any time.

Journalist Adil Shahzaib, in response to the question, “Can a caretaker government hold transparent elections?”, said that the caretaker government’s success in timely and transparent elections will prove its right choice, and if there is a delay in the election, holding transparent elections will be impossible. If delays in elections are seen in light of the PDM government’s failure to cope with the economic crisis, they can easily use the economic crisis as an excuse for delaying elections. By taking temporary measures, the government has deferred addressing the actual crisis rather than resolving it. Very few actions have been taken to address the crisis itself. By giving priority to political concerns over a stable economy, even an important opportunity like the budget has been wasted. The IMF criticized the lack of measures taken to resolve the discrepancy between income and expenditure. As a result, the chances of an agreement have been further reduced. This whole situation is the biggest obstacle to timely elections.

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