pakistan
Thursday Sep 16 2021
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ECP serves notices to Fawad Chauhdry, Azam Swati after ministers level allegations

An anti-terrorist force personal uses a metal detector to check the area of the Election Commission of Pakistan in Islamabad on August 26, 2008. — AFP/File
An anti-terrorist force personal uses a metal detector to check the area of the Election Commission of Pakistan in Islamabad on August 26, 2008. — AFP/File

  • ECP seeks explanations from both the ministers for their allegations.
  • Development comes two days after the ECP decided to issue notices.
  • Swati alleged ECP took bribes from EVM manufacturing companies.
  • Fawad alleged CEC was acting as Opposition's mouthpiece.


The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) issued notices to Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry and Federal Minister for Railways Azam Swati after they had levelled allegations against the institution, sources said Thursday.

The ECP has sought explanations from both the ministers for accusing Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja and the commission, sources said.

The development comes two days after the ECP had decided to issue notices to the information and railways ministers.

CEC Raja on Tuesday chaired a meeting of the ECP where the matter of allegations levelled by the federal ministers was discussed.

ECP members Nisar Durrani, Shah Muhammad Jatoi, and other officials of the commission attended the meeting.

The members condemned the allegations "in the strongest possible terms" and rejected them.

The commission had decided to seek proof backing the accusations by Swati, which were levelled during a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee for Parliamentary Affairs and another held the night prior at the President House, and those by Chaudhry which were levelled during a press conference.

The meeting decided to issue legal notices to both the ministers.

Chaudhry says will give 'detailed response' when he gets notice

Chaudhry, in reaction to the ECP's announcement, said that he will give a "detailed response" when gets the notice.

For now, he wrote on Twitter: "With all due respect for the ECP, if you do not wish to discuss political ongoings, then your conduct should be free of politics."

He went on to state that the ECP, as an institution, has an "incontestable" standing but personalities associated with the body are "not above mistakes" and all criticism is always directed towards individuals and not the institution itself.

Allegations by federal ministers

On Friday, the ECP officials had walked out of a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Parliamentary Affairs after Swati accused the commission of taking money from companies that make electronic voting machines.

Later on the day, Chaudhry said during a press conference that it seems the ECP has "become the headquarters for Opposition parties" and the chief election commissioner is "acting as their mouthpiece".