The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will hold a show of great power in the NA-249 constituency, where the poll is scheduled for April 29, following the arrival of PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz in Karachi, PML-N MNA from Sindh Kesoo Mal Kheeal Das Kohistani was confirmed to The Express Tribune on Thursday.
The MNA said Maryam, who has been unwell for the past few days, will reach Karachi on April 24 and visit the NA-249 constituency.
“A show of great power will be held in the area and Maryam Nawaz will address the PML-N rally participants there,” he added.
The rallies will be PML-N’s first major show after a rift in the opposition alliance, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) over issues of mass withdrawal from the assembly.
According to a source at PML-N, Maryam will also hold meetings with newspaper editors, the business community and party leaders during her visit to the metropolitan city.
The NA-249 seats have been vacant after Pakistan’s Faisal Vawda Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) stepped down as MNA to take on the role of senator.
There are 339,552 registered voters in the constituencies, where 277 polling stations have been established. All of these polling stations have been declared sensitive or very sensitive.
“We are installing CCTV cameras at the polling stations, where police and guards and police personnel will be deployed for security purposes,” provincial election commissioner Aijaz Anwar Chauhan told The Express Tribune, warning that stern action would be taken against those who violated the code. elections. behavior.
PML-N has fielded former finance minister Miftah Ismail in opinion polls, against PTI’s Amjad Iqbal Afridi, Qadir Khan Mandokhail of Pakistan People’s Party, Muttahida Qaumi-Pakistan Movement (MQM-P) Muhammad Mursaleen, chairman of Mustafa’s Pak Sarzameen (PSP) Party Kamal and Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP’s) Nazir Ahmed, to name a few.
The Awami National Party, which split with the PDM in support of the PPP, has announced support for Ismail in the NA-249 poll, and so has Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl.
Hope to win
However, PTI hopes for another victory in the constituency. “Pakistanis want to see change. They are tired of the two-party system, led by the Sharif and Zardari families. Our slogan ‘Naya Pakistan’ is coming true and it will pave the way for PTI victory here, the PTI candidate Afridi defended.
When asked about the report on the decline in PTI’s popularity, he denied the news. Apart from Afridi, PSP chairman Mustafa Kamal also hopes to win the by-election.
“People are disappointed with the current government’s performance. Now I hope to win a seat by a significant vote margin,” he argued.
Likewise, the PPP Mandokail stated that it was his turn to steal the attention because the Sindh government had performed “poorly” and people appreciated the party’s liberal and progressive policies on various issues.
In the last general election, Mandokhail was only able to pocket 7,236 votes in the constituency, which is even smaller than the TLP candidate, who collected 23,981 votes. However, now a question mark remains on the fate of the TLP in the constituencies, with the federal government deciding to ban the party.
Vawda, who bagged 35,344 votes, has won the 2018 elections in the constituency, with PML-N’s Shehbaz Sharif trailing behind with 34,626 votes. About 8,000 votes in favor of Shehbaz were rejected in the last general election. Meanwhile, the MQM-P candidate won 13,534 votes.
Back then, Shehbaz claimed that if his vote was not rejected, he would have won a seat.
This sentiment was echoed by Ismail.
“The 2018 elections were rigged and hijacked. If the elections were free and fair, the PML-N would have won in NA-249, and throughout Pakistan,” he claims.
He said that if he won the by-election, the priority would be ensuring the availability of drinking water in the area, building infrastructure, and providing access to education and health facilities for the community.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 16th, 2021.