Altaf Hamid RAO
Muzaffarabad/ MIRPUR (AJK), (Parliament Times) : Election Commission of Azad Kashmir on Thursday released the schedule for Local body elections in Azad Kashmir.According to details, the much-delayed polls would be held on 28 September 2022. The polling will be held all across the state from 8:00 AM till 4:00 PM in the evening.
While briefing the media here at PID complex, the chief election commissioner Justice (r) Abdul Rasheed Salahria who was accompanied by Farhat Ali Mir and other members of the commission said that the local government elections were being held on party basis. Mr. Salahria said that the date for the polls has been set after formal consultations with the government.Divulging the details, senior member of the commission
Farhat Ali Mir said that nomination papers can be submitted for local elections from August 15 to August 22 at 4 pm. “Returning officers will scrutinize the nomination papers on August 23, whereas appeals against the rejection of nomination papers can be filed with the tribunal till August 25”, Mir said, adding that the appeals would simultaneously be heard on 26 and 27 August.He said that the candidates can withdraw their nomination papers by 29 August 2022, whereas the final list of the contesting candidates would be made public the same day after 2:00 PM.“Election symbols will be allotted to the candidates on August 30, after which the election list of candidates will be published along with their election symbols”, he said.He said that after the announcement of the election schedule there will be a complete ban on fresh appointments, promotions, transfers of government employees and creation of new posts. “In case of urgency, permission from the commission is prerequisite”, he added.“Government Ministers cannot directly distribute funds”, he said, adding that during this period of time a complete ban would be on allotment of electricity polls, distribution of pipes and initiation of new development schemes.“
Use of state machinery and resources in elections has also been banned”, he said, adding that action would be taken against those who violate the code of conduct. referring to electoral laws “There is also a law by which a candidate could be disqualified if found guilty of violating the code of conduct”.Regarding the code of conduct, the Election Commissioner further said that the commission has taken political stakeholders on board in this regard and after incorporating their suggestions the code of conduct would be released shortly.
The Election Commissioner said that in addition to AJK Police the commission has sought deployment of Rangers to maintain law and order and hold fair and transparent elections in the state.Replying to a query, Farhat Ali Mir said that for public awareness a media campaign would be launched soon to sensitize the people about the importance of these elections.On the occasion, Director General Information Raja Azhar Iqbal and others were also present.