Electronic Voting System to be Introduced for 2023 General Elections

On 17th November, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced his plans to make the general election fair by introducing electronic voting in the country.  This need of electoral reforms stemmed from the rigging allegations of all political parties including PPP, PTI, and PMLN regarding the 2013 elections.

Imran Khan highlighted the PTI government’s aim to make the general elections fair. Since day one of his term, he has been open to having the 2018 elections investigated after allegations from the opposition. Imran Khan offered to form a committee to investigate the 2018 elections, but PPP and PML-N refused to be a part of it.

Right now, Azam Swati, Parvez Khattak, Shafqat Mahmood, and Babar Awan are working together on electoral reforms as a committee. The data for the e-voting procedure will be taken from NADRA, and the government is already in constant contact with the Election Commission to make this possible.

There are mainly three changes being proposed by the PM as of now;

1.       The 2023 Elections will have Electronic Voting and the biometric data needed for this will be extracted from NADRA.

2.       Overseas Pakistanis will also be allowed to vote through e-voting which will strengthen the government’s bond with this economically significant community.

3.       The government is also working towards making the senate elections more transparent. Therefore, instead of the secret balloting process, a show of hands approach will be implemented. This will prevent the corrupt practice of buying votes in the parliament. However, this electoral reform will require a constitutional amendment which needs a two-thirds majority to be passed, which means PM will need the opposition parties to be on board. As of now, PPP has refused to pass this reform and has asked PTI to admit to rigging Gilgit-Baltistan Elections before reforming the general elections.