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Electoral reform is inevitable

By: Abdul Ahad Qureshi

The by-election for the National Assembly seat in Karachi on Thursday has become as tragic as almost every election in the country. With the exception of the winning party, almost all other parties and candidates in the election process have rejected the results. The country’s two main opposition parties, which claim to be side by side in the PDM for constitutional supremacy, are engaged in a war of words over the Karachi election results. The ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is also the voice of the PML-N over the election results. The PML-N and PTI candidates have lodged a written complaint with the Returning Officer challenging the election results. The party leadership has said that those who are alleging fraud should present evidence otherwise remain silent. After the recent by-election experience in Daska, it was hoped that the Karachi by-election would not lead to such an unfortunate situation. There will be such a stain of transparency in the preparation of the results that there will be no room for anyone to raise a finger, but unfortunately this hope has not been fulfilled. The skeptics are of the view that the results received from a large number of polling stations at the beginning were clearly heavy for the PML-N, but then the results stopped coming for several hours. After which the map changed and the PPP votes increased. Dissatisfied with the results, the parties have every constitutional right to fight a legal battle. They have succeeded in proving their position, so it is not unreasonable to expect that a fair verdict will be pronounced on the Karachi by-election like Daska. However, the disgraceful situation that has taken place in the country after almost every election, which has made our elections a mockery, is intolerable and must end as soon as possible. Without a transparent electoral process, real and stable democracy is impossible. Is. Due to this state of affairs for decades, people’s trust in elections and democracy is eroding. The reduction in the turnout rate is a clear proof of this. Therefore, the electoral process should be cleared of any flaws in such a way that there is no possibility of any kind of rigging and vote theft. In this context, the invitation of Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Shahbaz Gul to cooperate with the government for electoral reforms should certainly be considered for the opposition. According to the Information Minister, the need for electoral reform is even more acute after the PPP took the system hostage for one seat. Dr Shahbaz Gul said that he wanted electoral reforms with the opposition for transparent elections while the Prime Minister also directed to procure electronic voting machines for this purpose. However, electronic machines alone are not the complete solution to the problem as they still have significant flaws, so decisions must be made with every aspect in mind and thoughtfulness. This task of electoral reform cannot be done by the government alone because it Therefore, national consensus as well as the consultation and participation of the Election Commission and other relevant bodies is essential. However, elections free from all doubts and all forms of interference are essential for national security, so without further delay, both the government and the opposition must unite and make fruitful progress in this direction.

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