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Thursday, October 6, 2022
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EditorialBack to Daska damage

Back to Daska damage

The Daska by-election for NA-75 has been haunting the government and the ruling party Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) since its first polling and repolling and now this inquiry report. Opposition Leader in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif has demanded that Prime Minister Imran Khan resign from the office and accept the report. On the other hand, the Punjab government says that those named in the inquiry report will face severe action.

The report is damning for the government officials and puts the entire government machinery in the dock. The inquiry launched after the Daska elections fiasco has produced a report which has found the election officials and the police to be involved in a pre-planned scheme to rig the elections. The by-elections became violent in this particular constituency and 20 presiding officers were ‘kidnapped’ or they let the captors kidnap them from the polling stations. However, when they were called in for inquiry, their statements were rather vague and seemed like they were concealing some facts. The inquiry also found that police officers who were on duty at the polling station did not remain in their designated position. It was revealed that there was quite a bit of meddling with the elections. For this reason, the court did not allow the results to be announced in February and a re-election was called for. The re-election took place in April in which PML-N’s candidate was victorious. The report also revealed that the POs were instructed to favour the government in the elections.

Alas, the PTI government has turned into what it supposedly hated the most, being corrupt. Those who support the ruling party may suggest that it is not the front man’s fault that people are employing corrupt means to win elections but after all it is the front man’s government and it is his fault. This government, like all previous ones, has been caught red-handed trying to steal elections and it is time the government accepted that. It was quite evident what went down at the polling stations and the report of the inquiry proves it. The whole system is flawed and corruption is ingrained in it. Anyone can be bought and sold or coerced into performing acts by intimidation. The whole fiasco was planned by government officials who are supposed to be honest and true to their work. Government officials of every field and stature were involved in the scheme, from Sialkot Colleges deputy director to now former special advisor to chief minister Punjab Firdaus Ashiq Awan. In conclusion, this election process has become redundant and change is must. However, in a system in which everyone is involved in such schemes, who will bring this positive change? The forerunners of the anti-corruption campaign turned out to be wolves in sheep’s clothing.

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