Dubious demarcations leave cantonment voters baffled

Published: July 13, 2018
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Areas lying under the six cantonment boards of Karachi have been included in 10 National Assembly constituencies and as many provincial  constituencies. DESIGN: MAHA HAIDER

Areas lying under the six cantonment boards of Karachi have been included in 10 National Assembly constituencies and as many provincial constituencies. DESIGN: MAHA HAIDER

KARACHI: In the new delimitations by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), areas lying under the six cantonment boards of Karachi have been included in 10 National Assembly constituencies and as many provincial  constituencies.

The new delimitations had been carried out by the ECP with the help of the statistics and maps of the provincial Board of Revenue (BoR) and Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). However, the statistics of BoR and PBS are not conforming to each other regarding cantonment boards, leading to confusion among voters in these areas.

According to the BoR statistics, the Faisal Cantonment Board lies in three districts of the city – District Korangi, District East and District Malir. The Malir Cantonment Board falls entirely under District Malir, whereas, the Korangi Creek Cantonment Board is divided in districts Korangi and Malir. The Clifton Cantonment Board falls in two districts – District South and District Korangi. The Karachi Cantonment Board is entirely located in District South, whereas, the Manora Cantonment Board falls entirely in District West. District Central is the only district of Karachi that has no area of any cantonment board within its territory.

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However, in the 2017 census results on its website, the PBS has shown the entire population of cantonment boards only in a single district, even if areas under them fell in multiple districts of the city. Thus, the population of Faisal Cantonment Board has been entirely included in District East, parts of which, according to the BoR, also lie in districts Korangi and Malir. Similarly, the PBS has counted the whole population of Korangi Creek Cantonment Board in District Malir. The population of Clifton Cantonment Board has been included entirely in District South, whereas, a part of it should have been included in District Korangi.

According to the PBS sources, data on the bureau’s website is based on provisional results. The PBS has yet to upload final data in which population and boundaries of the districts would be accurately displayed.

The sources added that in the session of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) that was held on May 28 this year with then prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in chair, it was decided to leave the announcement of the final results of the census for the next government. Initially, it had been proposed to announce the final results without the audit of 5% census data, however, then chief ministers of Sindh and Balochistan opposed the idea after which the CCI left the matter for the new elected governments to decide.

Since the final census results will be approved by the new governments that will be formed after the elections, the statistics on PBS website cannot be reconciled with the BoR figures at present.

The ECP carried out new delimitations according to district demarcations of the BoR. However, the commission has also incorporated some data provided by the PBS while deciding the new boundaries of constituencies.

Constituencies of cantonment boards

According to new delimitations, all the areas of the Malir Cantonment Board are included in a single national and provincial constituency – NA-237 and PS-88.

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The Faisal Cantonment Board area has been divided in three districts of Karachi and so it is included in three NA constituencies, including NA-237 District Malir, NA-239 District Korangi and NA-244 District East. A major part of its territory is, however, included in the constituency of District East. The Faisal Cantonment Board will be likewise represented in three provincial assembly seats – PS-88, PS-98 and PS-103.

A few parts of the Korangi Creek Cantonment Board have been included in NA-238 District Malir, however, its major chunk falls under NA-241 District Korangi. The cantonment board lies in two provincial assembly seats, PS-91 and PS-97.

Most of the areas of the Clifton Cantonment Board fall in NA-247 District South but a few of its localities have been included in NA-241 District Korangi. For Sindh Assembly, the cantonment board is covered by PS-97 and PS-111.

The Karachi Cantonment Board is entirely included in NA-247 District South and PS-110. Similarly, the Manora Cantonment Board entirely falls in single constituencies of national and provincial assemblies, which are NA-248 District West and PS-113.

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