Plea for thumbprint verification in all constituencies


ISLAMABAD: Another petition alleging rigging in the May general elections was filed in the Supreme Court on Friday.

The plea sought a court order for the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to carry out verification of thumb impressions of voters in all constituencies.

imgresThe petition moved by Advocate Tariq Asad on behalf of Kalsoom Akhtar, who is also a lawyer, said the verification should start from the constituencies from where Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the four chief ministers, speakers and the leaders of opposition in the National Assembly and provincial assemblies had been elected.

The federal government through secretaries of law and interior, the ECP and the National Database and Registration Authority have been named as respondents in the petition.

“If rigging is proved in these constituencies, the entire exercise of voters’ verification be repeated in other important constituencies and so on to uphold democracy,” said the petition, adding that people were perturbed at large-scale rigging, leaving a stigma that the prime minister and the chief ministers might have been also elected in a non-transparent manner.

It said the allegations of rigging had also created doubts about the future of democracy which might be restored only by satisfying the people that their representatives were elected though free and fair elections. “Democracy needs to be strengthened in order to safeguard political stability and confidence in the minds of people.

” The petition said the PTI had demanded that the ECP be held accountable for rigging in the elections and also threatened to launch a countrywide protest campaign.

Moreover, it said, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali  had admitted in the National Assembly that 40 to 50 per cent rigging had taken place in almost all constituencies.

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