The federal cabinet on Tuesday approved two important ordinances as part of the electoral reforms process to ensure transparency in elections and grant right of vote to the overseas Pakistanis by introduction of modern technology. Briefing media about the decisions taken in the cabinet meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said one ordinance would enable the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to use electronic voting machines (EVMs) in elections and the other would empower it to take steps to give voting right to the overseas Pakistanis. The minister said the government’s electoral reforms consists of four parts, including use of EVMs, e-voting for the overseas Pakistanis, biometric and legislation. He said EVMs had been developed and the government had unveiled its legislation agenda for the purpose, while work was underway on biometric and e-voting mechanism. The cabinet was given a briefing by Minister for Science and Technology Shibli Faraz and Information Technology Minister Syed Aminul Haq with reference to electronic voting machines and e-voting. He said the cabinet was informed that the lowest implementation of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) related to the coronavirus was recorded in Sindh, especially in Karachi. The situation in the province, particularly in Karachi, is a matter of concern, and if the SOPs are not followed it could further worsen and affect the supply chain upcountry. Islamabad, he said, is at the forefront in implementation of the SOPs, while there was stability and decrease in Covid-19 cases in Punjab and Khyber Pakthunkhwa due to better compliance of the precautionary measures. He pointed out that the SOPs implementation had significantly improved with the involvement of military personnel. The cabinet, he said, approved the deployment of the army personnel in Sindh, accepting the provincial government’s request. The situation would have been better in that province had its government already opted for the army personnel’s deployment. Fawad said the cabinet endorsed the decision of forming a committee to settle matters with the independent power producers (IPPs). No decision had yet been taken regarding payment to the IPPs, he added. The cabinet, he said, also endorsed decisions taken by its Economic Coordination Committee on April 28. Referring to the ECP’s decision of recounting of votes in the NA-249 Karachi by-election, Fawad said re-polling should be held in the constituency because the winning candidate would be getting hardly 5 percent votes. It was a matter of concern that anyone elected by only 5 percent votes, would represent the constituents in the assembly. It is a universal truth that rigging had been done in the bye-election, that was why the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) demanded re-polling, he added. About Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Maryam Nawaz, he regretted that unfortunately an immature political leadership had been imposed in the country, who did not know about the importance of legislature. Likewise, he mentioned, Shehbaz Sharif and Ahsan Iqbal wanted the Election Commission to reform the electoral process on its own. He said both PPP and the PML-N are reluctant to give voting right to the overseas Pakistanis. If they did not support the reforms, the government would move ahead in ensuring the participation of expats in the election process keeping in view their key role in Pakistan’s economy, he stressed. He pointed out that how the Parliament could be made irrelevant and the departments like National Accountability Bureau, ECP and others are allowed to do legislation on their own. He asserted that like the demise of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) and end of the politics of their leaders Asif Zardari and Nawaz Sharif, the politics of PPP and PML-N was also going to end. About the European Union resolution, the minister said a similar resolution was adopted against India as well but unfortunately the media only highlighted the one against Pakistan. He categorically said there would be no compromise on the issue of blasphemy as the respect and honour of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) was very close to the heart of every Muslim. The government attaches no importance to the EU resolution on its internal matters, he added.