ISLAMABAD   -    The Election Commission of Pakistan [ECP] yesterday changed the polling dates of bye-polls in the nine national and three provincial assemblies constituencies, as the Eid Milad un Nabi (SAWW) is also likely to fall on the polling day.

Earlier, the ECP had set a schedule of the bye-elections on October 9. The decision to change the dates was taken at a meeting chaired by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja.

According to the new schedule, the bye-polls in NA-157, Multan IV, NA-22, Mardan III, NA-24, Charsadda II, NA-31, Peshawar V, NA-45, Kurram I, NA-108, Faisalabad VIII, NA-118, Nankana Sahib II, NA-237, Malir II, NA-239, Korangi, Karachi, PP-139, Sheikhupura, PP-241 Bahawalnagar V, and PP-209, Khanewal VII would be held on October 16.

The ECP meeting also decided to hold local government elections in all districts of Karachi division on October 23. The top electoral body also sought a report from the provincial government, Election Commissioner Sindh for fixing polling date for local government elections in Hyderabad division.

Members of ECP, Secretary Election Commission and other senior officers also attended the meeting.

The Lahore High Court (Multan Bench) had also directed the ECP to change the polling date due to Eid- Miladun Nabi (SAWW).

Earlier, the ECP had postponed the by-elections in various constituencies of Punjab, Sindh, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) in view of the devastating floods.

The commission had postponed the by-polls in 13 constituencies of the National and Provincial assemblies due to non-availability of police, Pakistan Army, Rangers, and FC personnel as they were busy in rescue and relief operations in the flood-hit areas.