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By Polls: Final List of Candidates To Be Issued Today

Islamabad (September 16, 2018): The final list of contesting candidates for bye-elections to be held on 14th of next month will be issued today along with the allotted symbols.

By-elections on vacant seats of the provincial and national assemblies will be held across Pakistan on October 14.

Eleven National Assembly and 26 provincial assembly seats fell vacant due to different reasons, including resignations by those elected on more than one seat and death of some contesting candidates.

Four of the 11 National Assembly seats have been vacated by Prime Minister-elect Imran Khan – who won all five seats he contested. The seats vacated by him are: NA-35 (Bannu), NA-53 (Islamabad), NA-131 (Lahore) and NA-243 (Karachi). Two National Assembly seats NA-65 (Chakwal) and NA-69 (Gujrat) have been vacated by Chaudhry Pervez Elahi of PML-Q, who has now been elected the Speaker of Punjab Assembly.The seat of NA-56 (Attock) has been vacated by retired Maj Tahir Sadiq of PTI who also won from adjacent NA-55 seat. Likewise Ghulam Sarwar Khan has vacated NA-63 seat. He also won from NA-59 (Rawalpindi). Another seat, NA-124 (Lahore), has been vacated by PML-N leader Hamza Shahbaz Sharif, who has chosen to retain the provincial assembly seat he also won in the election.

There are 13 provincial assembly seats in Punjab on which by-elections will be held. They include PP-3 Attock, PP-27 Jhelum, PP-87 Mianwali, PP-103 Faisalabad, PP-118 Toba Tek Singh, PP-164 and PP-165, Lahore, PP-201 Sahiwal, PP-222 Multan, PP-261 Rahim Yar Khan, PP-272 Muzaffargarh, PP-292 Dera Ghazi Khan and PP-296 Rajanpur. Nine provincial assembly seats of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on which by-elections will be held include PK-3 and PK-7 Swat, PK-44 Swabi, PK-53 Mardan, PK-61 and 64 Nowshera, PK-78 Peshawar and PK-97 and PK-99 Dera Ismail Khan.Two provincial assembly constituencies each from Sindh and Balochistan where by-polls will be held include PS-87 Malir and PS-87 Khairpur; and PB-35 Mastung and PB-40 Khuzdar respectively.

On the other hand, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has extended the registration deadline for overseas Pakistanis wishing to participate in the i-voting process for the upcoming by-elections.

Overseas Pakistanis can now register till September 17. The previous deadline was September 15.

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According to an ECP official, overseas Pakistanis can now register themselves as voters by September 17.

All registered voters can cast their votes between 8am and 6pm (Pakistan Standard Time) on polling day, the official added.

He further added a letter had been written to the secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to educate the overseas Pakistanis in the registration process and to extend all possible assistance to them.

The official added, the eligibility criteria for overseas Pakistanis to register and cast vote is to have a machine-readable passport (MRP), National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) and a valid email address.A website has been developed by the ECP and NADRA to raise awareness and encourage them to register for i-voting with instruction in both English and Urdu, he added.

Moreover, he said a report will be submitted to the Parliment for further legislation regarding the pilot system.

The system has been made foolproof, he added.

On August 17, the Supreme Court (SC) had allowed Pakistanis living abroad to vote in the by-polls.

Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar had remarked that overseas Pakistanis would be participating in the by-election through i-voting, a system that allows voters to cast ballots from any computer connected to the internet anywhere in the world.

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Last Day For Overseas Pakistanis’ Voter Registration