­RAWALPINDI - Awami Muslim League President Sheikh Rashid Ahmed Monday asked the chief justice of Pakistan to simplify the affidavit form to be submitted by candidates, adding it was not possible for them to give all the details in a short span of time.

Addressing a press conference at Rawalpindi Press Club, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said a nikah form was easy to fill, but filling a nomination form was much more difficult. He said the services of lawyers would be required to fill the nomination forms.

The Supreme Court has practically restored almost all the information omitted from the nomination papers approved by the parliament last year.

These affidavits include declarations by candidates about not defaulting on bank loans or utility charges, details about their spouses, dependents, businesses, criminal charges, if any, education credentials, taxes paid in the last three years, contribution to the community’s welfare, donations to the party or sums received from the party and net assets with annual increase/decrease in them.

Candidates will also need to reveal information about their travels abroad during the last three years and cost incurred on them. They will permit the Foreign Office to obtain information if they have been citizens of any other country or have applied for that. Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said it was difficult for the candidates of the elections 2018 to add all the information to the forms.

He said there was a requirement to provide the details of the hotels where the candidate stayed in the last three years. “Banks are providing one-year statement of the people, however, there is requirement of the statement of last three to five years,” he said.

He urged the chief election commissioner to take notice of the issue. “I have also pointed out the main issue of timing of polling, which should be from 8am to 12 at night otherwise the turnout will remain low due to warm weather,” he feared.

He said the current season was not perfect for the elections as the people coming out to poll their votes would have to face the warm and humid weather. He said the Election Commission would have to make special arrangements for cold water and fans for the voters standing in queues outside the polling stations.

To a question about Ch Nisar Ali Khan’s decision to contest election as an independent candidate, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said he was happy that his old friend was starting a new journey in politics. “Nisar should tell the secrets as the time has come to inform the people of the truth,” he stated.

To question about his campaign, he affirmed he would start his campaign with PTI candidate for provincial assembly, Ch Adnan, from tomorrow. He said the people in Rawalpindi were facing water problem, promising they would bring water from Ghazi Barotha after winning the election.

“The people have facing the worst water shortage and electricity loadshedding and it will be the main issue in the election campaign,” he said and added solution to problems was free and fair elections.s