Pakistan elections: Senior bureaucrat resigns, accuses CEC and chief justice of poll rigging

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A screen grab of the viral video.

A high-ranking Pakistani bureaucrat tendered his resignation on Saturday, leveling serious accusations against the chief election commissioner and chief justice, alleging their involvement in election rigging during the recent polls.

Liaquat Ali Chattha, the former Rawalpindi Commissioner, made these claims while speaking at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.

According to Chattha, candidates who were initially losing in the elections were manipulated to emerge as winners.

Taking full responsibility for the alleged wrongdoing, Chattha was quoted saying, “I am taking the responsibility for all this wrongdoing and telling you that the chief election commissioner and the chief justice are also completely involved in this.”

He revealed that the pressure on him had escalated to the extent that he contemplated suicide but ultimately decided to bring the matter before the public.

Chattha resigned from his position, citing responsibility for the manipulation of poll results. He expressed remorse, stating, “Stabbing the country in its back does not let me sleep. I should be punished for the injustice I have done, and others who were involved in this injustice should also be punished.”

He urged the entire bureaucracy to refrain from engaging in wrongful activities for politicians, adding that he felt compelled to present the facts before the public.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) strongly refuted Chattha’s allegations, issuing a press statement that read, “The Election Commission of Pakistan strongly rejects the allegations leveled by the Commissioner Rawalpindi on the chief election commissioner or the election commission.”

The ECP emphasized that no instructions regarding changing election results were issued to the Rawalpindi Commissioner. However, the commission mentioned that the matter would be subject to investigation.

Punjab caretaker Information Minister Amir Mir also rejected Chattha’s claims, stating that he had not presented any proof of the alleged tampering of poll results.

Mir suggested that Chattha might be trying to kick-start his political career after retirement, as he was set to retire on March 13.

Various political parties, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, JUI-F, and GDA, have complained of rigging in the elections. Independent candidates, largely supported by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, won 93 of the 265 contested National Assembly seats.

Despite this, the PML-N and PPP formed a post-poll alliance with the aim of creating a coalition government, garnering support from MQM-P.

To form a government, a party must secure 133 seats out of the 265 contested seats in the 266-member National Assembly.

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