A polling staff member seals a ballot box. Photo: APP/ file

A polling staff member seals a ballot box. Photo: APP/ file

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja Thursday directed the chief secretary of Punjab to hold Local Government (LG) polls immediately.

The CEC chaired a meeting regarding LG polls in Punjab, which was attended by members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), the commission secretary, the Punjab chief secretary, and other officers of the Punjab government.

Secretary election commission, during the meeting, briefed that the Punjab government had sent a copy of the Local Government Act, 2022, to ECP, upon which the body had given its recommendations.

According to the report published in The News, ECP special secretary said the Punjab government had dissolved the local government institution in April 2019, and after the order of the Supreme Court, they were restored, whose term had also expired on Dec 31, 2021.

In the meantime, he noted, the provincial government kept amending the laws from time to time, due to which it is not possible to hold elections.

Under Article 140-A of the Constitution and Section 219(4) of the Elections Act, the Election Commission is bound to hold elections within 120 days of the expiry of the term of the local government institutions.

The director general law informed the ECP that the Supreme Court had issued clear orders for holding LG polls in Punjab and that not holding elections on time was not only in violation of the constitution and law but also the order of the Supreme Court.

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