ISLAMABAD : PPP yesterday asked Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Mohammed Raza Khan to stop posting troops inside the Gothki polling stations for the NA-205 by-election. Speaking at a news conference here, Secretary General PPP Syed Nayyar Hussain Bukhari and senior party leader Farhatullah Babar urged that ECP to reconsider its decision of posting troops inside polling stations. “This will be in the interest of free and fair elections. We don’t need troops inside the polling stations,” said Bukhari. He said that the elections in Gothki had already been postponed for five days as initially it was to be held on July 18 but they will now be held on July 23. “Holding elections is the sole responsibility of ECP and army should not be deployed within the polling stations,” he maintained.

Farhatullah Babar said, “How the elections can be called free, fair and transparent” when voting was conducted in the presence of the troops.”

He urged the ECP to reconsider the decision of posting troops inside polling stations in the interest of vote-cast in a free and fair manner.