ECP: According to information released on Wednesday, PTI leaders Firdous Ashiq Awan and Usman Dar have received summons from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) directing them to appear before an inquiry committee in the Daska by-election probe.
The letter, dated August 22, was issued to Awan, Dar, PTI Central Punjab President Umar Dar, businesspeople Arif Soni, Asif Soni, and Iqbal Soni, as well as ECP Deputy Director Naeemur Rehman.
The notification,described the circumstances surrounding the by-election that led to its declaration as invalid and the subsequent decision for a repoll.
A fact-finding investigation was started to look into the anomalies after the contentious by-election was plagued by violence, rigging, and the disappearance of over 20 presiding officers.
According to the notice published today, the ECP undertook a fact-finding investigation before opening a formal investigation against every “accused allegedly found participated in the fraudulent practises” during the by-poll.
The electoral authority emphasised that throughout the inquiry processes, significant facts were disclosed by the witnesses and the accused that called for additional investigation.
The findings “categorically” demonstrated that six people were present at a meeting on February 17, 2021, in the district police officer’s office, which was attended by officers and representatives of the district administration, police, and education departments.
The notice said that the PTI leaders were alleged to have steered the meeting, the “conspiracy influencing the results” had come at their behest, a sum of Rs300,000 each was disbursed to the presiding officers in their presence and the entire district administration and police hierarchy was “corrupted for carrying out illegal act/orders related to the actions”.
The accused have been given the go-ahead to appear before the inquiry committee on August 30 (Tuesday) at 10am at the ECP Secretariat in Islamabad.