LAHORE - The Returning Officers deputed for the 271 Union Councils of the provincial capital by the Election Commission Punjab chapter on Monday started receiving nomination papers of the candidates of much-awaited Local Bodies election.

According to the schedule issued by the Commission’s Punjab chapter, nomination papers can be submitted till Tuesday (today).

The Election Commission Pakistan  started issuance of the nomination papers on Saturday and these are also available on ECP official website, so it is hoped that the candidates may be downloading papers from there.

The Election Commission Pakistan  issued schedule for LG election in Punjab on November 6 according to which nomination papers would be received till November 12, publication of notice of all the nomination papers on November 13, objection to the nomination papers on November 13, scrutiny of nomination papers and publication names of validly nominated candidates from November 16 to 18, appeals against acceptance / rejection of nomination papers to be filed on November 19 and 20 and disposal of appeals on November 21 to 23. Withdrawal of candidature on November 24, publication of list of contesting candidates with symbols allotted to them on November 25 while polling will be held on December 7. According to the schedule, Returning Officers will declare results on December 10.

Election Commission Pakistan directed all Executive Authorities in the Federation and in the provinces not to use State Resources in LG polls calculated to influence the elections in favour of a particular candidate in order to ensure that elections are conducted honestly, justly, fairly and in accordance with law.

The code of conduct of the Commission reads that if any person in Government Service misuses his official position in any manner in order to influence results of the elections, he shall be liable to be proceeded against under Section 61 of the Punjab Local Government Act, 2013.

It further reads no transfers/postings of the civil servants would be made after the issuance of Election Schedule of Local Government Elections without prior approval of the Commission till the publication of election results. Furthermore, after the issuance of Election Schedule, the Prime Minister, Governor, Chief Minister, Speaker, Deputy Speaker, Federal and Provincial Ministers, Advisors to PM or CM or any other holder of public office will not visit the area of any LG to announce any development scheme or to canvass or campaign for any candidate or any political party.

It also reads, “No Deputy Commissioner/District Coordination Officer shall perform protocol duty with the PM, CMs, Federal Ministers, State Ministers, Provincial Ministers, Advisers to the PM and CM or any  person on their behalf till conclusion of the electoral process. Any holder of public office, who is found to have violated any provision of Election Laws or the instructions issued by the Election Commission, shall be proceeded against as mandated in the law.