Tensions between the government and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) have escalated after the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Wednesday postponed Punjab elections, scheduled to be held on April 30, till October 8.
The postponement was done in view of the recent spate of terrorist attacks in various parts of the country.
The order said that the interior ministry conveyed to the ECP that the deployment of civil and armed forces would not be possible due to the “spike in incidents of terrorism across the country” and threat alerts from intelligence agencies.
PTI is not happy with ECP’s decision while the government welcomed it.
PTI Chairman Imran Khan who has been campaigning for early elections has termed the ECP’s announcement a violation of the Constitution.
Stating that he did not dissolve his governments in Punjab and KP “to allow a bunch of fascists to impose a reign of terror”, Imran Khan led the charge in slamming the decision while his party members also criticised the postponement.
However, in a meeting of the federal cabinet, it was noted that general elections should be held simultaneously across the country. It is not possible to hold elections in two provinces, they said.
The meeting observed that the security and financial situation was not suitable for elections. Plus, the government was also short of funds and discussions were still going on with the IMF on a bailout package.
On Thursday, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb said that postponing elections is in the country’s interest.
She went on to say a population census is going on in the country. It is not possible to hold elections before the completion of the census.
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