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ECP to take action against MPs for violating code of conduct in by-election.

Byline: Nabeel Anwar Dhakku

CHAKWAL -- The district monitoring officer (DMO) for the PP-20 by-election has written to the secretary Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), requesting that necessary proceedings be initiated against two parliamentarians from Chakwal for alleged violation of the code of conduct.

MNA from NA-60 retired Major Tahir Iqbal and PP-22 MPA Zulfiqar Ali Khan from PML-N are accused of violating the election rules by Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) candidate Tariq Mehmood Afzal. In his application submitted before DMO Mohammad Shahid, Mr Afzal has said both parliamentarians were using state machinery in the constituency for PML-N candidate Chaudhry Sultan Haider Ali Khan.

An ECP official told Dawn that MNA Tahir Iqbal addressed public meetings in Kajli, Dhudial and Chakora, all three of which fall in PP-20 where the by-election is going to be held on Jan 9. MPA Khan was also accused of taking active part in electioneering.

DMO Mohammad Shahid then sent notices to both parliamentarians on Dec 15 and directed them to submit their replies within seven days but did not receive a reply from either A reminder was sent to both of them on Dec 22 to which they did not respond either after which the DMO sent a letter to the ECP secretary, available with Dawn, requesting that necessary action be taken against both parliamentarians.

'In the past, no action was taken after such violations but no one will be spared now,' an ECP official said, adding that both the parliamentarians will be disqualified if they were found to have violated the rules.

Talking to Dawn, DMO Shahid said his office had received several complaints in which violations of the code of conduct were highlighted.

'Chairman Municipal Committee was accused of the same violation but he did not repeat [the violations] after we warned him,' the DMO said, adding that many over size hoardings, banners and posters meant for campaigning were removed.

'We are trying our best to stop violations of the code of conduct,' he said and explained that due to lack of awareness, citizens install oversized hoardings and banners in order to please politicians which creates more problems for these politicians.

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Publication:Dawn (Karachi, Pakistan)
Date:Jan 3, 2018
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