Candidates vying for the upcoming general elections on February 8 are rushing to submit their nomination papers today, as the extended deadline set by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) is scheduled to end at 4:30 pm.
Prominent political figures, including Tariq Fazal Chaudhary from PML-N, former Islamabad mayor Pir Adil Gillani, Sheikh Ansar Aziz, and ex-deputy mayors Zeeshan Naqvi and Chaudhry Riffat Javed, among others, have submitted their nomination papers on Sunday. Raja Imran Ashraf from PPP has also filed his nomination papers.
The ECP extended the deadline by two days following appeals from various political parties. After the deadline, the ECP will conduct scrutiny of the nomination papers from Monday (December 25) through December 30, as per the updated schedule.
Candidates can appeal against the acceptance or rejection of nomination papers until January 3, 2024, with decisions expected by January 10. The updated list of candidates will be released on January 11, and candidates can withdraw their papers until January 12. The allocation of electoral symbols is set for January 13, with the general elections scheduled for February 8.
The ECP has also extended the deadline for foreign observers to submit applications from December 31, 2023, to January 20, 2024. Over 200,000 accreditation cards have been printed, and monitoring officers have been appointed to ensure compliance with the code of conduct.
PML-N Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz is set to contest from two National Assembly seats and three provincial assembly seats. JUI-F has fielded Mufti Kifayatullah against PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif in NA-15, Mansehra.
PTI’s Azam Swati expressed his wish to contest against Nawaz from Mansehra. In Shangla district, candidates from various parties, including PML-N, PTI, ANP, PPP, JUI-F, and independents, have submitted nomination papers for one National Assembly and three provincial assembly seats.
In south Punjab, candidates, including Javed Hashmi and Saad Khursheed Khan Kanju, have submitted nomination papers. The Lahore High Court Chief Justice has directed the judiciary to remain open for the next two days for election petitions, and LHC Multan Bench Justice Sardar Muhammad Sarfraz Dogar has stopped the police from harassing the Dasti family based on a petition by ex-MNA Jamshed Dasti’s wife Nazia Jamshed.