Thursday April 18, 2024

Twin cities ready for elections amid tight security

By Khalid Iqbal
February 08, 2024

Rawalpindi : Around 3.6 million voters of Rawalpindi division are going to elect their representatives for the next government through their votes here today (Thursday) in Pakistan’s 12th general elections.

Polling staff receiving polling material for General Elections 2024 at the G8 distribution Centre in Islamabad on February 07, 2024. — APP
Polling staff receiving polling material for General Elections 2024 at the G8 distribution Centre in Islamabad on February 07, 2024. — APP

Polling will start from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm without any break on Thursday (today). The local administration has established a total of 2,540 polling stations where all arrangements have been finalised. It is expected that the majority of people will come out from their homes to poll votes today.

More than 9,500 policemen would perform security duty for the elections while the security would be deployed at 580-A, 980-B, and 1221-C category polling stations. The city had been divided into 280 clusters for the security patrolling. Elite commandos would patrol all around near important places and installations, City Police Officer (CPO), Rawalpindi Syed Khalid Hamdani claimed.

Pakistan Army and Rangers Quick Response Force would also perform patrol duties at important places, he said adding, that Police Quick Response Teams would patrol across the city and provide immediate response if required.

The CPO further said that the display of the weapons would be completely banned.

The implementation of the code of conduct issued by the Election Commission of Pakistan would be ensured at all costs, Commissioner Rawalpindi Division Liaquat Ali Chatha assured.

The local administration has declared 533 polling stations ‘highly sensitive’ while 890 have been declared ‘sensitive’. “We have installed CCTV cameras in all sensitive polling stations to monitor all activities on Election Day”, the local administration claimed. Army and Rangers have been deployed in all highly sensitive and sensitive polling stations.

The total number of voters in the national and provincial constituencies is 3.6 million including 1.85 million male and 1.74 million female voters.

All polling stations have been set up in government buildings, educational institutions, municipal departments, health offices, dispensaries, mini-hospitals, and veterinary hospitals. The local administration has provided all necessary facilities in these polling stations like drinking water and toilet facilities.

As many as 2,671 polling stations and 6,936 polling booths have been set up for the elections out of which 989 reserved for men, 964 for women, and 718 will be joint polling stations. As many as 3,463 polling booths for men and 3,473 for women have been set up in the district.

As many as 2,671 presiding officers and 13,872 assistant presiding officers will perform their duties, while 6,936 polling officers and 2,671 deputy messengers will assist. Of 462 polling stations for the NA-51 Murree seat, 101 have been set up for men and as many for women; there will be a total of 260 joint polling stations and 1,431 polling booths as well. There are a total of 538 polling stations in NA-52 Gujjar Khan out of which 169 are for men, 168 for women, and 201 are for joint polling stations. Total number of polling booths will be 1,302.

The NA-53 circular will have 319 polling stations including 81 for men, 74 for women, and 164 joint polling stations. There will be a total of 844 polling booths. There are a total of 344 polling stations for the NA-54 Taxila, including 138 for men, 137 for women, and 69 combined. As many as 861 polling booths will be set up in the constituency.

As many 311 polling stations, including 156 for men, 148 for women, and seven combined, besides 778 polling booths will be established in NA-55 Rawalpindi Cantt. There are a total of 371 polling stations for NA-56 City including 181 polling stations for men, 188 for women, and two are common, while there are a total of 940 polling booths.

Similarly, as many as 326 polling stations, including 156 for men, 155 for women and 15 joint polling stations will be set up in the NA-57 City II. As many as 780 polling booths will be set up in 326 polling stations. The Regional Transport Authority (RTA) has arranged for over 100 wagons, buses, and Suzuki to bring all necessary items to polling stations a day before Election Day. The transport also brings polling staff to polling stations on Election Day.