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Monday May 27, 2024

NA-8 Bajaur RO allegedly pressurised

The RO refused to be pressurised and asked the persons to leave

By Sohail Khan
April 20, 2024
A man casts his vote as a soldier stands guard at a polling station during the general elections. — AFP/File
A man casts his vote as a soldier stands guard at a polling station during the general elections. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The returning officer (RO) of NA-08 Bajaur was allegedly attacked and pressured on Friday to change the polling staff for the upcoming by-elections 2024.

The by-polls for NA-08 in the district have been scheduled for April 21 for which transportation of election material and election staff would commence from today (April 20).

As a protest against the incident, all district administration offices, including those of the deputy commissioner, RO, assistant commissioners, additional assistant commissioners and Tehsildars/ Naib Tehsildars have been closed.

Moreover, the officials of district administration deputed for rain damages collection have quit their duties and returned to DC office, says a letter addressed by the RO to district returning officer, Bajaur, also available with The News.

The letter with subject titled ‘Special Report - Attack on Staff/ Interference’ in official work was submitted to the DRO for his perusal and demanded further necessary action, while its copy was also forwarded to the district election commissioner, Bajuar.

It is informed that on 19th of April, 2024, some plain-clothed persons came to the RO office at about 12.00 pm and misbehaved with him using pressure tactics to change the polling staff for the upcoming by-elections-2024, and also demanded data of polling staff, the letter said.

The RO refused to be pressurised and asked the persons to leave. However, at 02:05pm he was informed through phone by his staff that the persons again came to the office and physically assaulted district education officer Hazrat Ullah with guns and fled the scene, the letter said. Hazrat Ullah was taken to the hospital in injured condition.

The latter demanded legal action against the persons, adding that it would be impossible to manage elections timely when district administration has closed offices in protest.