The printing of ballot papers for General Election 2018 began on Sunday under the supervision of the army.
The ballot papers are being printed at three printing presses across the country — Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had imported papers for the printing of ballot papers to ensure transparency.
According to sources, 210 million ballot papers will be printed with more than Rs2 billion being spent on the exercise, making it the most expensive venture in the history of the country’s elections.
The ballot papers are said to carry a watermark, something which none of the previous papers had.
The papers will also be printed in “round figures”, meaning if a polling station has 1,201 voters, 1,300 papers will be printed, the sources added.
Political campaigns begin
With just 24 days to the election, campaigning is beginning with rallies scheduled across the country today.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan is expected to address party workers at a rally in Bannu today. Imran is contesting the election scheduled for July 25 from NA-35, Bannu, along with four other seats across the country.
Furthermore, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman will address his supporters in Dadu through hologram technology while the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will host an inaugural event for its new office in NA-127, Lahore — the constituency of former prime Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz.
Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed also took to the streets of Rawalpindi in a horse carriage last night as part of his election campaign.
ECP asks Punjab govt to provide security to candidates
Moreover, the ECP also took notice of the reported roughing up of a PML-N candidate in Multan and directed the Punjab government to provide security to election candidates in Multan, Narowal and elsewhere.
In a letter to Caretaker Punjab Chief Minister Dr. Hasan Askari Rizvi, the ECP said as per law election candidates should be provided security to take part in their campaigns.