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ECP declares severe consequences if women barred from voting

By Our Correspondent
July 23, 2018

KARACHI: Anyone found trying to restrict or bar women from voting on July 25 would face imprisonment of up to three years, a hefty fine or both, Sindh Election Commissioner Muhammad Yousuf Khan Khattak has warned.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the election commissioner said that all necessary steps are being taken to ensure women’s participation in the election, and if anyone is found posing any sort of undue restriction on women or barring them from voting, the ECP would take strict action against them under Section 9 of the Elections Act, 2017.

The rule violator could face a prison sentence of up to three years, a fine of Rs100,000 or both, the statement added.

Quoting the election commissioner further, the statement added that all political parties contesting the elections should ensure maximum participation in the voting process and should take steps to bring more women voters to the polling stations.

The district returning officers and returning officers concerned have also been directed to take steps with full force to ensure the participation of women, said Khattak. The commissioner added that the ECP would do its best to maintain a peaceful atmosphere on the polling day so as to facilitate the voters in casting their votes without any fear or apprehension. Under the same section of the Elections Act, the commissioner can declare the results of one or more polling stations, or even that of the entire constituency, null and void, if the turnout of women voters is less than 10 per cent.