Free Press Journal

Pakistan elections 2018: Parties allege large scale rigging and irregularities in counting

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New Delhi: Doubts have emerged on the fairness of the Pakistan general election after the much-awaited results were being provided on plain paper in Khi and Hyderabad, rather than an official Form 45.

As per the rules, the Election Commission of Pakistan officials are bound to provide results on Form 45, instead, results were handed out on plain paper. In another instance of alleged rigging, blank Form 45s were signed by the Presiding Officers, prompting doubts that results may be changed before the final announcement. On a related note, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president Shehbaz Sharif rejected the election results following rigging allegations.

“Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) wholly rejects the results of General Elections 2018 due to manifest and massive irregularities. Form 45 was not given to our agents, results were stopped and votes were counted in the absence of our poll agents. This is both unbearable and unacceptable,” Shehbaz said while addressing the media here. Shehbaz further claimed that the mandate of the voters was humiliated, and the democratic process pushed back by decades. “This is the mockery of rules by Election Commission itself. Rules dictate that ECP officials are bound to provide results on Form 45, instead almost ALL of them in Khi and Hyderabad are insisting on giving us results on plain paper like this,” he noted.


Meanwhile, cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party is leading in 117 seats in the 11th general elections of Pakistan, Samaa TV reported citing unofficial results. Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is leading on 55 seats, while Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has taken lead on 34 out of a total of 272. As counting of votes is underway in Pakistan, a number of political parties and journalists have alleged that the elections have been rigged. Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari took to Twitter express his concerns about the alleged malpractices going on in the elections.

Voting began at 8 am (local time) on Wednesday, during which most of Pakistan’s 106 million people came out to cast their votes. Polling took place in the country’s 85,307 polling stations, out of which 17,007 were declared as “highly sensitive.” The Election Commission of Pakistan on Thursday said that results of the general elections were delayed due to a software error. The ECP was also accused of conducting rigged elections due to non-provision of Form 45, a sheet containing the final vote tally at each polling station.