The debate regarding organized rigging in 2013 General Elections has been finally put to rest after the report by the Judicial Commission. The three-member Judicial Commission was led by Chief Justice of Pakistan Nasirul Mulk in its verdict said that the elections were in large part organized and conducted fairly and in accordance with law. The report also said that no plan or design to manipulate or influence the election was found during the inquiry and lastly that the 2013 elections were a true and fair reflection of the magnate given by the electorate.
Addressing the nation Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said that now the inquiry commission has confirmed the transparency of 2013 polls, the door of allegations and accusations should be closed. The PM also blamed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and said that the party embarrassed Pakistan in the whole world by making fair and transparent elections controversial. He added that this regrettable chapter of history that will not be forgotten easily.
The PM in his address neglected the fact that the JC has pointed out many flaws in the electoral system, the role of returning officers (RO’s), the case of missing form 15 many other irregularities are a big question mark on the claim that the elections were free and fair in there entirety. The onus is now on all political parties to sit together, analyze the many irregularities pointed out in the JC report and work to improve the electoral system.
Instead of celebrating the verdict as a victory the ruling party must fulfill its responsibility of electoral reforms. At the same time the verdict is no way a set back for PTI, but in fact the party’s stand against alleged rigging has brought to the public eye some glaring weaknesses in the elections.
The JC report has pointed out some glaring weaknesses in the electoral system, the onus is now on political parties to rectify them.