PESHAWAR: Voting commenced at the 269 polling stations in the city’s NA-4 constituency at 8am today.
Thursday has been declared a holiday by the deputy commissioner for the convenience of voters.
This is also the first time that electronic voting machines (EVMs) will be tested in an electoral exercise.
According to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), 100 polling booths are using the EVMs alongside the manual voting process.
With posters, banners, and promotional material adorning the constituency’s roadways and the campaigning having ended two days prior, the by-election is perceived to be a litmus test for the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) popularity in the province, especially in light of next year’s general elections.
The male-to-female ratio of registered voters is almost 3:2.
Six political and eight independent candidates are vying for the MNA slot; they include PTI’s Arbab Amir Ayub, Asad Gulzar — late incumbent Gulzar Khan’s son — for Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Awami National Party’s (ANP) Khushdil Khan, Jamaat-e-Islami’s (JI) Wisal Farooq, Tehreek-e-Labaik’s Allama Shafiq Amini, and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Nasir Khan Moosa Zai.
Apart from 1,400 army personnel, around 4,500 police officials are stationed for security in and around the polling stations.
Real-time coverage follows after the infographic below
[Update 8:00 AM, PST]: The voting process has commenced in Peshawar and is scheduled to carry on uninterrupted, concluding at 5pm.