Polling under way in Lahore for NA-120, seat left vacant by Sharif’s ouster

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Lahore: Polling started in the NA-120 seat in Punjab province of Pakistan on Sunday. The seat was left vacant by Nawaz Sharif’s ouster in the Panama verdict.

The polling is underway in the Lahore constituency, reported the Dawn.com.

Long queues could be seen outside the polling stations as people started coming out to cast their vote as early as 8am.

A total of 44 candidates are contesting for the National Assembly seat from Lahore.

Pakistan Army personnel are supervising the polling process, the news. The polling will continue until 5pm.

Only the voters are being allowed inside the polling stations by Rangers and army personnel. All the stations in the constituency have been declared “sensitive”. To facilitate the registered voters, the ECP linked the 220 polling stations with Google Maps.

Hours after polling started, activists of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and PML-N almost came to blows at Cooper Road, chanting slogans against each other. Law enforcement personnel, however, warned the political workers of baton charge, following which the activists dispersed.

This constituency has thrice elected Nawaz Sharif as the country’s prime minister since 1990.

Kulsoom Nawaz is defending the PML-N stronghold as a candidate of the ruling party while PTI’s Dr Rashid and PPP’s Mir have also vowed to win the constituency.

The ECP has set up 220 polling stations — 103 for male voters, 98 for women and 19 joint polling stations for men and women voters.

There are 321,786 voters, including 142,144 female voters. The ECP has delivered 350,000 ballot papers to the election staff.

For the first time in the history of Pakistan, Biometric Voter Verification Machines are also being tested in the constituency.

Some 30,000 voters will be polling their votes on biometric machines. More than 100 biometric machines have been installed at 39 polling stations.

Among the candidates are Jama’at-i-Islami’s (JI) Ziaur Rehman Ansari and the newly formed Milli Muslim League’s independent candidate, Sheikh Mohammad Yaqoob.

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