ECP blames ‘reluctant’ govt for lack of funding for polls

• Guard dog submits fixed one-page report to High Court; read by judges in the chambers • According to the Commission, Punjab has agreed to pay 75,000 security guards in response to a demand for 300,000 ISLAMABAD: A report submitted by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to the apex court regarding the release of Rs21 billion for election expenses has also made much of the government’s reluctance to release the necessary funds, as the federal government seeks to circumvent a Supreme Court order directing elections to be held in Punjab on May 14.

The top court ordered the election watchdog to report on the government’s response to the request for funds and keep the court informed about poll funding in its April 4 verdict. According to the SC decision, the Supreme Court may issue orders or give directions to the appropriate authorities if the funds are not provided or there is a shortfall, as the case may be.

The ECP sealed the report on Tuesday, one day after Finance Minister Ishaq Dar introduced a money bill in the National Assembly and Senate. The bill, dubbed an attempt to delay the elections, seeks parliamentary approval for the release of Rs21 billion to carry out the elections in accordance with the Supreme Court’s order.

A source with access to the information told Dawn that the one-page report informed the Supreme Court of the government’s reluctance to issue the Rs21 billion required for the purpose. The report’s contents are unknown.

The ECP report will be presented to members of a three-judge bench for consideration in chambers within a day or two, in accordance with the instructions in the judgment issued last week.

In addition, the report states that the election watchdog was informed by the Punjab caretaker government that the government could only approve 75,000 security personnel in response to the demand for 300,000 security forces because of resource limitations.

It should be mentioned that the judgment had ordered the Punjab caretaker cabinet, particularly the chief secretary and the police chief, to come up with a plan that would be acceptable to the ECP for supplying enough people for election duty and security.

On the off chance that, the Punjab government and its authorities must, in the release of sacred and lawful obligations and obligations, proactively give all guide and help to the commission for the holding and lead of the overall political decision, according to the judgment.

Taking everything into account, a request documented by the Pakistan Tehreek-I-Insaf (PTI) was returned by the recorder on April 10 on the record of “unintelligible pages”, “overwriting and cutting”, and that respondents refered to in the supplication were not “as expected informed” about the motivation behind the request.

Elections occurring simultaneously The fact that the money bill was presented to parliament on Monday indicates that the federal government’s hesitation in issuing funds is being interpreted as an apparent attempt to postpone elections, at the very least until October.

The decision to oppose elections and involve parliament in the process of obtaining approval for the funds required to hold elections led to the introduction of the bill at two cabinet meetings.

Interestingly, the bill was also submitted to the Senate, despite the fact that the Senate has no influence over the money bill’s passage and can only make recommendations that do not bind the NA. In addition, the Senate chairman, who did not appear to be in a hurry, requested that members submit their suggestions by Friday.

Then again, various goals have been passed by legislators looking for synchronous decisions rather than split surveys after the disintegration of KP and Punjab congregations, as conceived by the top court in its new judgment.

On Monday, the Senate approved a resolution supporting joint elections, and on the same day, the KP caretaker cabinet supported nationwide general elections.

In addition, a Balochistan Assembly resolution calling for a delay in the ongoing census exercise cited the economic crisis.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *