Fake News

ISLAMABAD – It seems like the dust regarding the General Elections has not settled, though the public has voted Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf into power. After multiple complaints that the Result Transmission System (RTS) designed to compile and transmit the results of the election failed to do its job, NADRA has come forward, trying to deflect the blame regarding the malfunctioning.

The main purpose of the RTS was to allow presiding officers to enter the number of votes obtained by each candidate in their respective polling stations after vote counting on July 25. However, as soon as the polling staff tried to log into the app to enter the results, the application crashed.

The secretary of the electoral body Babar Yaqoob Fateh Mohammad appeared on TV screens as the results were being compiled, and informed the nation that the RTS had “collapsed”. However, the NADRA officials are reiterating, to this day, that the application was working smoothly, in a flagrant contradiction with the facts.

A Senior Assistant Presiding Officer, Sufia Zamir, who performed her duty for NA-129 (Lahore) constituency also confirmed that the RTS application designed by NADRA did actually fail. She stated that she could not progress beyond the login screen, and there was no way she could get to the data entry screens to enter the results. She also added that NADRA officials had been alerted to the possibility that the app may fail during the training sessions conducted a week prior to the elections. However, they refused to entertain the idea, and remained adamant that there was no way this could happen.

Moreover, a Deputy Commissioner currently serving in Punjab also attested to the fact that the RTS application – which was designed only for Android and not for iOS operating system – collapsed, leaving the Returning Officers with no option but to tabulate the results manually. On condition of anonymity, the officer denied that the ECP issued any instructions to stop the transmission of results electronically.

Case registered against former Nadra employees for stealing sensitive data

Additionally, a Senior Presiding Officer, who has under his belt a vast experience of conducting elections, and took part in his life’s 10th general elections last week, has also confirmed that the Nadra-designed application collapsed. Deployed in Lahore’s NA-124 constituency, the officer too has rubbished the claims that the Returning Officer or the ECP staff advised against utilizing the RTS system.

NADRA’s claims that the ECP meddled in the polling process seems to be a cover-up in a bid to hide its own negligence and weakness in executing the application, which crashed soon as the polling time ended at 6 PM.

Another reason behind NADRA being at loggerheads with the Election Commission of Pakistan seems to be the ECP’s earlier allegation that NADRA had been involved in leaking sensitive data ahead of the polls.

The Election Commission of Pakistan had filed a complaint with NADRA regarding the breach of data, asking the chairman Usman Mobin to conduct an inquiry against those involved in the alleged data leak.

Nadra bigwigs vehemently deny data sharing allegation

In response, the Nadra officials denied sharing any sensitive data to influence the polls.