ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has said elections are not likely to be held within three months due to various legal and procedural challenges, local media reported Tuesday. As per the media, a senior ECP official said that preparations for the general elections would require around six months, citing recent delimitation of constituencies and bringing district and constituency-wise electoral rolls in conformity as major hurdles in early elections. “Delimitation is a time-consuming exercise where the law provides for one month’s time just to invite objections, another one month was required to address the same,”he was quoted as saying. The publication reported that the senior ECP official said a “minimum of three months would be required to complete the exercise, followed by another gigantic task of updating voters’ lists.” According to the law, a ballot paper with a watermark is to be used which is not available in the country and would have to be imported. The official disclosed that the ECP had proposed to “amend the law to provide for ballot papers with a security feature, instead of the watermark.” He went on saying that inviting bids and scrutinising financial and technical quotations would also require some time. Shedding light on the issue regarding the procurement of election material, he said for around 100,000 polling stations, nearly two million stamp pads would be required. “This is just one example, other material in huge quantities, including scissors and ballpoints, will also have to be procured,” he said while talking to Daily Dawn. Commenting on the legal challenges of holding a general election within three months, the ECP official said that under Section 14 of the Elections Act, the ECP was to announce an election plan four prior to the polls. He said the law requiring the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) and giving overseas Pakistanis voting rights also held the field and had to be repealed. The official said the commission had already announced the schedule for local government (LG) elections in Balochistan, setting May 29 as the polling day, while the process was also underway to hold LG polls in Punjab, Sindh and Islamabad. “We will have to drop the plan for LG polls if general elections are to be conducted,” he noted.