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Top Court Grants Voting rights to Overseas Pakistanis

LAHORE: For the very first time in the country’s history, overseas Pakistanis have been allowed by the top court to vote in the upcoming by-elections.

A three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar and comprising Justice Umar Ata Bandial and Justice Ijazul Ahsan, resumed on Friday hearing a petition filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan seeking arrangements for eligible overseas Pakistanis to cast their votes.

During today’s proceedings at the Supreme Court’s Lahore Registry, the bench directed the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to coordinate with the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) to ensure fool-proof arrangements for the iVoting system.

“Electoral results of iVote should be kept separate , presented before the parliament and included in overall results,” remarked Justice Nisar.

Congratulating overseas Pakistanis, he said that their right to vote had been recognised. He noted that the ball was now in the ECP’s court now to guarantee implementation of the court orders. The top judge also said the pilot project should be completed as per the ECP rules and operational plan.

Meanwhile, the ECP has announced that by-elections on vacant seats of both national and provincial assemblies will take place on October 14.

  • Supreme court
  • voting
  • overseas
  • ECP