Voting in 20 Punjab Assembly constituencies is underway with reports of delay in start of the process in some polling stations and low voter turnout on Sunday.

The ECP has posted several photos as voting on its Twitter handle.

Though locations haven’t been mentioned, in one of the photographs, women can be seen casting their votes, while in the other two, election officials can be seen processing prospective voters.

As voting commenced, Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja, in his tweet, urged people to definitely exercise their right to vote.

He said voting not only “strengthens democracy”, but also leads to a “stable Pakistan”.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Police shared photographs on Twitter of their personnel assisting elderly and differently-abled voters.

“During the by-elections, Punjab Police personnel are engaged in helping the elderly, women and disabled people while fulfilling their duty of public service,” it said on Twitter.

The ECP tweeted that polling has begun in Muzaffargarh’s PP-272 constituency.

The top contenders are PML-N’s Syeda Zehra Basit Bukhari and PTI’s Moazzam Ali Khan.

Registered voters in the constituency total 203,567 — 111,459 male and 92,108 female. One-hundred-thirty-eight polling stations have been set up, 38 for males, an equal number for females and 58 combined.

Four polling stations have been declared as “highly sensitive” and 43 as “sensitive”. In Muzaffargarh’s PP-272 and 273, 2,800 police personnel have been deployed for security.

PM SHEHBAZ SHARIF MESSAGE: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, in a message on Twitter, urged voters to keep in mind the “four years of corruption, incompetence, economic destruction, facilitation and patronage of mafias” and the “destruction created in the name of tabdeeli under the “dark era” of the former Imran Khan government.

“Punjab was subjected to the worst governance for four years. Citizens were deprived of free medicines and students were deprived of scholarships,” he said in a series of tweets.

“Government posts and transfers were openly bought and sold. The state of civic facilities deteriorated and lawlessness was on the rise. The condition of Punjab is no less than an insult to the people of Punjab,” he added.

Speaking to voters directly, he said: “Your vote is your power. Reject the politics of chaos, hatred and division with this power. One person’s ego, style of politics and incompetence have ruined the beauty of our society. Cast your vote for national development and the bright future of your children. I have full faith in your power of choice.”

ASAD UMAR: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar, in the meantime, urged voters living in the 20 constituencies to vote for “haqeeqi azadi (true freedom)”.

“Today is not a day to sit at home,” he tweeted.

On the other hand, PTI’s Shehbaz Gill has alleged that a woman, who arrived at a polling station to cast her vote, found that her name was not in the voters’ list.

He did not specify where the incident took place, but said she was sent to another constituency.

“Who is responsible for these data operating errors?” he tweeted.

In another tweet, Gill shared a photograph of an old woman on wheelchair and paid her his respects.

He wrote: “Salam Maa Ji (Salam mother), staying home today means supporting thieves.”

MIFTAH ISMAIL: Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has shared an interesting tweet. He urged voters to cast their ballots in favour of the PTI if they were satisfied with the performance of former Punjab chief minister Usman Buzdar’s government.

“[But] if you think the provincial government should keep a check on prices, provide cheap flour and sugar, construct and maintain hospitals and schools, and keep your neighbourhood clean, then vote for the PML-N,” he said on Twitter.

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