Islamabad - Following growing reservations of political parties over the proposed delimitation of constituencies, the Election Commission of Pakistan on Tuesday established a facilitation centre in Islamabad to take up objections.

According to a spokesperson for the ECP, “the facilitation centre will address objections of the people regarding the initial delimitation of constituencies of national and provincial assemblies”.

“Five teams have been constituted to receive the objections pertaining to all four provinces, federation and FATA in the office hours,” the spokesperson said.

The move comes after the ECP released a list of preliminary delimitation of constituencies on March 6 in the light of the 6th population census. The list has evoked a serious unrest among the political parties.

The ECP has placed lists of the proposed delimitation of constituencies at all district election offices, asking the stakeholders to file their objections, if any, by April 3.

Meanwhile, the National Assembly speaker has constituted an eight-member special parliamentary committee to examine objections relating to the delimitation of constituencies and it will present its recommendations within seven days.

Candidates aspiring to take part in the next general election have been shocked to see the massive changes in the respective constituencies.

Background discussions revealed that all major political parties have rejected the proposed delimitation of constituencies demanding to revisit the pronouncement.

They have warned of serious consequences in case the ECP failed to reconsider redress their grievances.

They believe that it (proposed delimitations) was the handiwork of some hidden hands which desires to bring political parties of their liking to power. Some political players were of the view that there were serious discrepancies in the ECP’s proposed list where the electoral body has decreased the number of seats in different districts with high population.

Some sources questioned the timing of the ECP list saying the general election was almost around the corner and the candidates would be unable to run their campaign. They asked the poll body to hold the next general election on the basis of previous voter list rather than the new one prepared on the basis of the population census. 

According to a notification issued by the ECP earlier, the Islamabad Capital Territory will have three constituencies, Punjab 141, Sindh 61, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 39, Balochistan 16 and Federally Administered Tribal Areas will have 12 constituencies in the National Assembly.

After legislation on the delimitation of constituencies for the general election 2018, the ECP notified the allocation of fresh seats.

In the 342-member National Assembly, the total seats of Punjab will decrease by nine (seven general and two women seats), KP will have five more seats

(four general and one woman) and Balochistan will have three seats additional seats (two general, one woman) and the federal capital will have another National Assembly seat, totaling three. The number of seats for Sindh and Fata will remain the same.

The ECP has determined the share according to the results of the population census officially published on January 3.

As many as 163,541 countrywide blocks had been marked to conduct the 6th census whereas one percent to five percent audit of census blocks by a third-party had been approved by the Council of Common Interests.