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ECP seeks funds for using EVMs in next elections

ECP has sought funds to mass produce EVMs. Source:: FILE.

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has sought funds from the government to produce electronic voting machines (EVMs) for the next general elections.

In its letter to the government, the ECP also asked for a warehouse to mass produce and keep nearly 800,000 EVMs in a secure place for the general elections in 2023.

“ECP looks to develop proper infrastructure for the elections and monitor the entire process without any difficulty. For the development of infrastructure, ECP has requested the government to release the funds as soon as possible,” the letter read.

The government had convened a joint sessionof Parliament earlier this month, which passed dozens of treasury bills, including one regarding the use of EVMs in the elections and the right to vote for Pakistanis living abroad.

Earlier this week, the federal cabinet formed a ministerial committee to liaise with the ECP to ensure implementation of the recently passed legislation on electoral reforms.

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry had announced that the next general elections would be held through EVMs at any cost and overseas Pakistanis would be able to cast their votes.

Chaudhry said that a ministerial committee – comprising Parliamentary Affairs Adviser Babar Awan, Railways Minister Azam Swati, Science and Technology Minister Shibli Faraz, Information Technology Minister Aminul Haq and Attorney-General Khalid Jawed Khan—had been formed.

He said the committee will liaise with the ECP to ensure the implementation of the recently passed laws. The committee will finalise all the nitty-gritty on use of the EVMs in the next election such as cost, numbers of machines and others, he added.

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