Form 45 scandal hits NA-249 by-election as voting ends

PSP blames presiding officer for getting blank Form 45 signed from polling agents: 30 candidates in the race: 276 polling stations set up, 67 sensitive: POs asked to keep GPS on for live monitoring by ECP

By: News Desk      Published: 11:42 AM, 29 Apr, 2021
Form 45 scandal hits NA-249 by-election as voting ends

Pakistan Sarzameen Party (PSP) has blamed the presiding officer for getting signed the blank Form 45 from the election agents at polling station number 109 of NA-249 hours before the polling was yet to close on Thursday, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

Form 45 is usually signed by the polling agents after completion of the counting of votes.

Polling ended for the National Assembly’s constituency 249 of Karachi which had fallen vacant after the resignation of PTI’s Faisal Vawda. The voting was largely peaceful.

PSP General Secretary Hassaan Sabir said they had proof of delinquency by the presiding officer of the polling station number 109. He said they had already lodged a complaint against the presiding officer to the high-ups. He said the presiding officer got the Form 45 signed around 2:00 PM, much earlier than the ending of the polling time.

Earlier, the Election Commission of Pakistan took strict notice of PTI lawmakers’ presence in the constituency during the polling hours.

According to the details, six PTI MPs including Firdous Shamim Naqvi, Raja Azhar, Saeed Afridi, Bilal Ghaffar, Shah Nawaz Jadoon and Shahzad Awan were found to be violating the code of conduct by being present in the constituency during the polling hours.

The ECP has issued their expulsion orders, directing police to expel them from the constituency.

Earlier, the polling started at 8am on Thursday and will continue till 5pm. Strict security measures have been adopted for the smooth and peaceful conduct of the election. Police parties keep patrolling different polling stations of the constituency to maintain order. 

SSP Kimrani Fida Janwari inspected the polling stations in Baldia. He said strict security measures have been made in the sensitive polling stations. 

All major political parties including ruling PTI, PPP, PML-N, PSP and MQM are taking part in the by-polls. A knife edge competition is expected among the contesting parties. 

District returning officer Syed Nadeem said the ballot boxes will be delivered to the election commission office in the ECP-provided vehicles under the surveillance of police parties. All presiding officers are required to keep their GPS location on and the ECP will do their live monitoring. The presiding officers will hand over Form 45 and Form 46 after obtaining signatures from the polling agents. 

Read Also: 47 polling stations in Daska by-election declared sensitive

Thirty participants are taking part in NA 249 by-polls.

The seat fell vacant after the resignation of Senator Faisal Vawda. He resigned from the national assembly seat on dual nationality issue and became senator after contesting Senate elections. 

276 polling stations have been set up in NA 249 of which 67 have been declared very sensitive. The number of polling booths is 796. The number of total registered voters in the constituency is 339,591. There are 210,056 male voters and female voters’ number is 137,935. 

PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif has urged people to come out of their homes and use their voting right. It’s a national duty of people to exercise their democratic right for choosing a candidate of their choice, he said. 

I appeal to my brothers, sisters, sons, daughters and old people to use their right of vote in order to electable and honest leaders who could fulfil their promises. PML-N leaders never let down people. If you choose to elect PML-N candidate Miftah Ismail, I assure you that he would resolve all issues of the area, Shehbaz said adding that he is hopeful that people will make a right decision and fulfil their national responsibility by electing right leaders who could bring out the country from the deluge of problems.

Read More: ECP puts brakes on PML-N bike rally in Daska

He cautioned the voters that they should follow the covid 19 SOPs and they should wear masks to save their and the lives of their follow beings. 

The covid-19 situation is worsening in the country and due to rising infection and fatalities rate both mainstream opposition parties, PML-N and PPP cancelled their polling campaigns in NA 249. 

Reporter Adiya Naz, Asif Jaffery and Daniyal Syed