The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has agreed in principle with the AJK authorities to retain the right of dual vote for Kashmiris settled in the four provinces and Islamabad. “Yes, they have approved retention while accepting our arguments for the dual votes of AJK people who are living in Pakistan,” confirmed AJK election commission Secretary Muhammad Younas.
Talking to The News on Sunday, he said the ECP with its chief election commissioner (CEC) would give a formal nod to reject the pending proposals and continue the recognition of AJK people in exercising their right to vote. The CEC, Justice (Retd) Hamid Ali Mirza, and ECP members, full commission, would meet tomorrow (Tuesday) to dispose of the applications. They would discuss different aspects i.e. legalities, input from AJK authorities and Right of Citizenship Act. “The ECP secretary conveyed me the willingness of the ECP that the Kashmiris’ right of dual vote, one in AJK and second in Pakistan, would be maintained in accordance with previous arrangements,” Younas said. To a question, he described it an achievement under which the Kashmiris’ right of two votes would not be snatched.
“The proposal would stand automatically cancelled with the final decision on part of the ECP body”. Younas had a long session with ECP Secretary Ishtiaq Ahmed Khan just a few days back to given feedback on the subject and presented data about the AJK people settled in Pakistan.
The ECP secretary, in a talk with this correspondent a few days back, had stated that it was not the Election Commission’s initiative but a number of applications were moved before it seeking single vote for Kashmiris, either in Pakistan or AJK.
Full Article: Kashmiris will retain dual vote right: AJK official.