By elections: Army to be deployed only on ‘highly sensitive’ polling stations

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Monday reassured holding of ‘free and fair’ by-elections in 42 constituencies across Pakistan on 22 August.

However, the army has rejected ECP’s demand of deploying 11,000 personnel on sensitive polling stations, and assured to deploy the troops only on ‘highly sensitive’ polling stations.

Secretary ECP Ishtiaq Ahmed spoke to reporters here and informed the media of decisions taken at a meeting chaired by Acting Election Commissioner Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jilani earlier today to review arrangements for the by-elections.

Defense Secretary Asif Yasin and other officials also attended the meeting.

He said that there are 7606 polling stations across the country, of them 3080 are normal, 2686 sensitive and 1840 have been declared highly sensitive, adding that army to be deployed in and outside the most sensitive polling stations.

The ECP high official said army officers have been given magisterial powers, enabling them to check and ensure holding of free and fair polls in his polling station.