PTI leader Shahbaz Gill questions the ECP’s impartiality after criticising it for the alleged errors in the voter lists LAHORE: In the midst of allegations of rigging and clashes between PTI and PML-N supporters on Sunday, voting is currently taking place for by-elections on 20 Punjab Assembly seats, which will determine the province’s next chief minister.
Even though there were a few clashes, voting started at 8am and is scheduled to go until 5pm.
During the voting process in Lahore’s constituency PP-158, an altercation erupted between PTI and PML-N workers. A head injury was consequently sustained by one of the PML-N employees.
In the meantime, Jamshed Iqbal Cheema of the PTI and Rana Ahsan Sharafat of the PML-N got into a heated argument.
Jamshed Iqbal Cheema will be arrested, the police decide.
The PTI leader Jamshed Iqbal Cheema has been taken into custody by the police following the altercation between PTI and PML-N workers.
Cheema is accused of taking part in inciting violence by the injured PML-N employee. To arrest Cheema, according to the police, teams have been dispatched.
Violence is observed by ECP.
As soon as the fight in Lahore’s PP-158 was reported, the Election Commission of Pakistan instructed the district returning officer to investigate the incident and get in touch with law enforcement.
According to the district returning officer, the situation will soon be brought under control in response to the instructions.
In response to reports of a fight, Atta Tarar of the PML-N
An immediate notice of the incident has been taken, according to PML-N spokesperson Atta Tarar. He claimed that the PML-N employee’s head injury was brought on by PTI members Jamshed Iqbal Cheema and Saeed Mahes.
According to him, these two PTI leaders have been subject to arrest warrants.
No one can be permitted to cause unrest, Tarar continued. He added that the video shows that PML-N candidate Ahsan Sharafat maintained his composure.
PTI questions the impartiality of the ECP
PTI leader Shahbaz Gill questioned the impartiality of the election body while criticising the Election Commission of Pakistan for what he claimed were errors in the voter lists during the crucial by-elections for 20 seats in the Punjab Assembly.
Shahbaz Gill posted a video of a man on Twitter, asking, “Who is responsible for denying someone their right to vote?” The man in the video claimed that the names of two members of his family were missing from the voter list. In this case, he suggested filing a complaint under Article 6 of the constitution.
Additionally, he posted a different video of a female poll worker who alleged that fraud was occurring in the PP-167 electoral district. The female poll worker claimed that after objecting on her CNIC, she was made to leave the polling place and that she was not permitted to return for 1.5 hours, during which time voting continued.
Is it feasible without the ECP’s participation, Sill questioned?
In a separate tweet, the PTI leader criticised the poll workers at a polling place where he claimed a woman who came to vote was sent to a different constituency because her name wasn’t on the voters’ list.
Who is accountable for the mistakes made by the data operator, he questioned?
In response to Shahbaz Gill’s accusations, the Punjab election commissioner stated that making unsubstantiated claims about the election process shouldn’t make it contentious.
He denied claims that poll workers had been ejected from Muzaffargarh’s polling places 46 and 47.
The provincial election commissioner also said that polling agents who have been approved by political parties are permitted to sit in the polling places.
Amir Bakhsh, a PTI polling agent, was present at polling station number 44, according to the returning officer, but no PTI polling agent showed up at polling station number 46.
A spokesperson for the ECP responded to the PTI leader’s statement by saying that the chief election commissioner had made it clear to the IG of Punjab and the province’s chief secretary that no reprisals should be taken against any civilians or people.
The spokesperson added that the CEC has threatened serious consequences if anyone takes retaliatory action against anyone. He insisted that in order to ensure free and fair elections in the province, the CEC directed officials to take all feasible measures.
Twenty Punjab Assembly seats were up for by-election earlier that day, and heavy security was in place.
Due to the internal uprising within the PTI, these seats became vacant. The PML-N, Punjab’s current ruling party, needs to win at least 10 of the province’s 20 seats to maintain its hold on power, while the PTI needs to win at least 13 seats to reclaim the province’s top spot.
After 25 PTI MPAs—20 directly elected and five elected on reserved seats—voted for Hamza Shehbaz Sharif, going against the party line, he was appointed chief minister. Numerous political heavyweights, including seven former provincial ministers, are running in the by-elections, which is their defining characteristic. They are Saeed Akber Niwani, Nauman Langrial, Faisal Jabona, Malik Asad Khokhar, Malik Asif Bha, Haroon Sultan Bokhari, and Ajmal Cheema.
Syed Zain Qureshi, an incumbent MNA, Saifuddin Khosa, a former MNA, and Malik Zaheer Abbas Khokhar, an independent candidate, are all running in by-elections on the PML-N and the PTI lists. The importance of the elections has increased significantly because four of the 20 seats are in Lahore, the provincial capital and the geographic centre of Pakistan.
The Multan, PP-217 election is the one that is receiving the most attention. Sheikh Salman Naeem of the PML-N is running against Syed Zain Qureshi, the son of former foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. Shah Mehmood Qureshi lost the 2018 general election on the same seat to Sheikh Salman Naeem, who won the race as an independent. In 2018, Qureshi was prevented from becoming the chief minister of Punjab by Sheikh Salman Naeem, who is also known to have been Jehangir Khan Tareen’s choice. Now, Shah Mehmood’s son Makhdoom Syed Zain Qureshi, a sitting MNA, is running from this seat to exact revenge on his father for losing.
Two members of the same family are running against one another in Muzaffargarh’s PP-272. Former provincial minister Haroon Sultan Bokhari is running as an independent against the spouse of his real brother, Syed Basit Sultan Bokhari. Haroon, who has won the seat three times, finished second to his mother in the same constituency in the 2018 elections when she was running as the PTI candidate. After voting for Hamza in the CM election, the incumbent MPA was declared ineligible. To fill the vacancy, her son Basit Sultan has now nominated his wife and is running against Syed Haroon.
Sardar Saifuddin Khosa, the brother of former CM Punjab Sardar Dost Muhammad Khosa and the son of former governor Punjab Sardar Zulfiqar Ali Khosa, is running for office in Dera Ghazi Khan’s PP-288 constituency in what will be the third major contest of the year. After MPA Mohsin Atta Khosa cast her vote for Hamza Shehbaz, the seat became vacant. The PML-N has put up Abdul Qadir Khan Khosa to fill the vacancy.
Attention has also been drawn to the elections for two seats in Lodhran, the district of Jehangir Khan Tareen, a former confidant of Imran Khan. Since former prisons minister Punjab Zawar Warraich switched allegiances to the Nawaz League and voted for Hamza Shehbaz, Pir Amir Iqbal Shah, a former MPA from 2002 and 2008, is now the PTI candidate in PP-224. In the early 2018 by-elections, Pir Iqbal Shah, the father of Amir Iqbal Shah, won over Ali Tareen because Jehangir Khan Tareen was declared ineligible. Jehangir Tareen was elected in 2015 after winning the by-election, and this time his group is running in the by-election.
Izzat Javaid Khan of the PTI is running against former PTI MPA Nazeer Ahmad Khan Baloch in PP-228, a different Lodhran seat. Nazeer voted for Hamza and was subsequently disqualified. Ahmad Khan Baloch, his father, is a former MPA.
In Bhakkar, where Saeed Akber Niwani, a former provincial minister, is running as the PML-N candidate after being disqualified for casting a ballot for Hamza, the race is extremely competitive. The brother of two former MPAs, Najeebullah Khan Niazi and Inamullah Khan Niazi, Irfanullah Khan Niazi, has challenged him. In the past, in the by-elections of 1997, 2013, and 2014, both Najeebullah and Inamullah have won the seat three times each. Niazis previously defeated Niwanis, so this matchup is expected to be just as challenging.
Amin Zulqarnain, the brother of Aun Chaudhry, formerly Imran’s blue-eyed boy, is this time’s PML-N candidate in PP-170. He was disqualified for casting a vote for Hamza. Malik Zaheer Abbas Khokhar, a supporter and former MNA, has been put forward by Imran for this position. The PTI believes it will win this seat with a sizable margin because Zaheer previously served as an MNA in 2002.
Additionally, Asif Bha, a former provincial minister for Shehbaz Sharif, has challenged Ameer Hyder Sangha, the PML-N candidate in PP-83, Khushab. Ameer is the brother of PML-N defector and former PTI MPA from this district Ghulam Rasool Sangha. The PTI has proposed Malik Hassan Aslam, the brother of the current MNA Umar Aslam. A challenging
There are candidates for the Tehrik-e-Labbaik Pakistan in almost every constituency, and it is anticipated that the TLP will cause an upset in Bahawalnagar.
In the constituencies for PP-7, PP-83, PP-90, PP-97, PP-125, PP-127, PP-140, PP-158, PP-167, PP-168, PP-170, PP-202, PP-217, PP-224, PP-228, PP-237, PP-272, PP-273, PP-282, and PP-288, by-elections will be held.
According to analysts, the PML-N and PTI’s support and the themes of their respective platforms would be reflected in the results of the elections.
Today, 4.5 million voters would cast ballots.
More than 4.5 million [4,596,873] voters will exercise their right to vote, according to a report by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). According to the ECP statistics, 3140 polling places have been set up in 20 constituencies, where 175 candidates are running for office. Additionally, all 20 constituencies now have a total of 1,471 polling places. All of the polling places in Lahore have been deemed sensitive, with 122 of them being the most sensitive across all constituencies. Official sources state that the ECP Punjab office in Lahore set up a control room to oversee the voting procedure.
At sensitive polling locations, Pakistan Army soldiers will also be stationed alongside Rangers at polling places in Lahore, Multan, and Bhakkar. The law-enforcement agencies have received instructions from the ECP on how to put the code of conduct into effect.
ECP constructs control rooms.
According to a statement from the ECP, special control rooms have been set up at the central and provincial levels for monitoring, which will “promptly resolve” complaints about the election.
In addition, the Punjab government shut down the bridge leading to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa in advance of the by-elections, citing security concerns.
Due to security concerns, the bridge at Dajal Checkpost has been closed to all traffic, according to DPO Bhakkar, and will remain so until Sunday’s election is over. However, the choice to close the bridge had an impact on the area’s traffic patterns.