(WebDesk) - A lack of interest of Pakistanis living aboard flagrantly evident as deadline for registration of Internet voting has been ended today. Out of above five hundred thousand Pakistanis residing overseas, only seven thousand and four hundred registered themselves for internet voting which is not an encouraging trend for the present PTI led government which worked hard to give the expats the right to vote.
Five hundred and twenty thousand overseas Pakistanis showed an unexpected and strange attitude towards the lack of interest in the electoral and political system of Pakistan. Only seven thousand and four hundred Pakistanis living and settled in foreign countries - being registered to the internet voting for the by elections scheduled to be held in October 2018 – can take part in the voting process now.
Out of above five hundred thousand Pakistanis residing overseas, only seven thousand and four hundred registered themselves for internet voting. Photo: Screenshot
According to the election commission sources, two hundred thousand individuals have visited the internet voting website. More than ten thousand expats have signed up for internet voting and after all the phases and preparations made to entertain the overseas Pakistanis to have them practice their right to vote remain unsubstantial as only one percent of total number of Pakistanis living in foreign countries got themselves registered for the internet voting in the by-elections on 04 October 2018.
The overseas Pakistanis have shown little interest in getting themselves registered for first ever I-voting in the upcoming by-election in October in 37 constituencies.
Election Commission and NADRA sources said that the voting software technically and administratively shows no disturbances and glitches so far - hence is considered safe and successful to include the expats in the electoral and political horizon of Pakistan.
Though, few of the voters have faced difficulties due to unavailability of their names in the list of the electoral lists.
Despite extending the deadlines for two days, expats have shown very little interest in registering themselves for internet voting.
The online registration for overseas Pakistanis for upcoming by-polls has been extended by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) from September 15 to September 17.
Prime Minister Imran Khan and the rest of the PTI leadership not only before resuming the office but after taken over the charge as government - on multiple occassions claimed a great support of Expats and struggled hard to ensure them the right to vote.
Internet voting is an online voting service. Using this service, overseas Pakistanis can cast their vote online in their respective constituencies from anywhere in the world using any internet-connected device. It is estimated that an overall of 8 million Pakistanis are residing abroad.
It is pertinent to mention that Prime Minister Imran Khan and the rest of the PTI leadership not only before resuming the office but after taken over the charge as government - on multiple occassions claimed a great support of Expats and struggled hard to ensure them the right to vote. Furthermore, the efforts of Chief Justice of Pakistan gave this dream a reality.
The interest that have put in the elctoral process - slated for by-elections - by the overseas Pakistanis, is not only distressing but also raise questions of the PTI led government dependency in resolving multiple problems of Pakistan with their help, financial assistance and expertise to benefit the government and country.
Report by Adeel Warraich from Islamabad
Translated and Edited by Mehreen Fatima