ISLAMABAD - The Election Commission of Pakistan has taken serious notice of various complaints received from contesting candidates, political parties and individuals regarding irregularities in constituencies where by-elections are going to be held on December 4, the commission said on Thursday.

The Election Commission has directed the Chief Secretary Punjab; Inspector General of Punjab police, the District Coordination Officers (DCOs) and District Police Officers (DPOs) concerned to ensure implementation of the ECP code of conduct in letter and spirit and that no government machinery/state resources shall be used in electoral campaign activities in favour of any candidate.

In this regard, separate letters have been issued to all the concerned authorities and they have been directed that any violation of the code of conduct would be looked into in order to ensure the conduct of free, fair and transparent by-elections. They have also been warned that any deviation in this regard may entail legal consequences. Moreover, as envisaged under Article 220 of the constitution, it is the duty of all executive authorities in the federation and provinces to assist the commission in the discharge of its duties.

Furthermore, the provincial election commissioner (PEC), Punjab has also been directed to ensure that such complaints shall not be repeated in future as the ECP. By-elections in NA-107 Gujrat-IV, NA-162 Sahiwall-III, PP-26 Jehlum-III, PP-92 Gujranwala-II, and PP-122 Sialkot-II are scheduled to be held on December 4, 2012.