General Elections under new census

General Elections under new census

In a significant development, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif confirmed on Tuesday that there would be no delay in the general election scheduled for this year in Pakistan. He stated that the election would be conducted based on the new digital census data.

During an interview with a private news channel, the Prime Minister emphasized that the upcoming polls should be based on the latest census results of 2023.

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He mentioned that once the census data is available, a meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI), which includes chief ministers from all provinces, would be called.

PM Shehbaz clarified that while the Election Commission is responsible for holding the elections, there is no reason for any delay.

He also mentioned that his government’s tenure would be completed on August 12, and he expects the government to step down before completing its full term.

This statement contrasts with what Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah had previously said on a TV show, where he indicated that the new census might not be notified in time for the elections.

He explained that in such a case, the elections would be held based on the previous census data and delimitation.

PM Shehbaz’s announcement may also ease tensions with allies like the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), who have expressed concerns about the census figures.

MQM-P had vowed to resist any move to use figures that they consider inaccurate.

Consultation with Nawaz Shareef

Regarding the caretaker prime minister, PM Shehbaz stated that he would consult with coalition partners and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif.

He expressed hope for reaching a consensus with the Opposition Leader in the National Assembly, Raja Riaz, on a non-controversial caretaker prime minister.

In response to questions about the recent hike in petrol prices, PM Shehbaz explained that international crude oil prices dictated the petrol prices, which he had no control over.

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The increase in petrol and diesel prices was in line with the IMF’s demands and was necessary due to the country’s economic conditions and IMF agreement.

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