Long queues of voters witnessed in Swat’s polls

Shafi Ullah

MINGORA: Long queues of voters including male and female are being witnessed in polling stations and booths in Swat district where polling process for second phase of local bodies’ election in KP is peacefully underway on Thursday.
After Zuhar prayers, the voters including male and female besides young and senior citizens thronged to polling stations in Mingora, Amankot, Saidu Sharif, Margazar, Barikot, Margazar and others adjoining areas and are exercising their right of franchise in a free and peaceful atmosphere amid tight security arrangements by local police and law enforcement agencies.
Great rush of voters are being observed in polling stations of upper Swat areas including Khawazakhela, Malam Jabba, Bahrain, Koza Bandai, Matta, Charbagh, Kabal and Kalam where voters are exercising their right of votes to elect their candidates for seats of chairmen and mayor at tehsils councils besides general, women, farmers/labourers, youth and minorities seats in Swat.
The supporters of candidates have arranged free transport for facilitation of senior citizens, women and persons with disabilities. The candidates have established private booth outside premises of polling stations to facilitate young voters.
In Swat, the total number of registered voters is 1,407,948 including 784,221 male and 623,723 female whom would elect candidates for 214 village and neigbourhood councils besides tehsils councils. Election Commission of Pakistan has established 993 polling stations including 243 male, 229 female and 521 combined besides 2,528 polling booths for facilitation of voters.
The polling started 8a.m. and will continue till 5p.m. without break. However, voters in premises of polling stations would be allowed to cast their votes after expiry of the schedule time. Carrying of arms and ammunitions inside the polling stations were not allowed and mobile phones in polling booths were discouraged to ensure secrecy of the ballot papers. Votes counting will start soon after completion of polling process in presence of the polling agents and results would be declared in front of them.