PESHAWAR: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has awarded tickets to billionaires for contesting the Senate elections on Monday, which will be held on March 3, 2018.
The PTI has announced the names of candidates for contesting the Senate polls but the name of chief of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Sami (JUI-S) Maulana Samiul Haq was not included among them. Several billionaires were declared eligible for contesting the Senate elections, whereas there were reports that reservations against them were also raised during the PTI parliamentary board meeting.
Earlier, PTI parliamentary board received over 50 applications of candidates for contesting the Senate elections from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Seven candidates were declared eligible and they were issued tickets after detailed scrutiny.
According to the sources of parliamentary board, the PTI awarded tickets to Senator Azam Swati, Member National Assembly Khiyal Zaman Orakzai, Ayub Afridi, Faisal Javed Rana, Fida Hussain, Abdul Latif Yousufzai and Deputy Speaker KP Assembly Dr Meher Taj Roghani.
There were reports of awarding of tickets to Maulana Samiul Haq. However, the PTI parliamentary board kept him out while several billionaires made their entry. Among them are Haji Ayub Afridi of Khyber Agency, the owner of an international brand electronics company and the father of the owner of Peshawar Zalmi of Pakistan Super League Javed Afridi. Billionaire Haji Ayub Afridi held a meeting with Imran Khan in Banigala on November 26, 2015 and announced to join PTI.
Azam Swati is another billionaire who ran businesses in the USA, Pakistan and other countries and is a taxpayer of USA. He possessed masters degrees in economics, political science, LLB and LLM. He joined the PTI in 2011 after parting ways with Jamiat. He remained the provincial president of the party. He was awarded the tickets of general and technocrat seats of the Senate.
Khiyal Zaman Orakzai is an MNA of PTI from Hangu 16, residing in a big bungalow in Hayatabad, Peshawar. He is the owner of Emirate Hotel in Peshawar and also runs property business. He joined the PTI in 2011.
Faisal Javed Rana belongs to Punjab and considered a senior leader of PTI. Currently, he is working as Central Additional Secretary Information and spokesman for the PTI. Professionally, Faisal Javed Rana is an advertising specialist and has been hosting political shows on FM radio for nine years. He holds the world record of performing services as stage secretary for 126 days in public meetings continuously.
Dr Meher Taj Roghani is the Deputy Speaker of KP Assembly. Born on April 14, 1942 in Mardan, she is a doctor by profession. She remained the head of Pediatrics Ward in Khyber Teaching Hospital, Rehman Medical Institute and Hayatabad Medical Complex. Before performing her services as deputy speaker KP Assembly, she remained an adviser to the CM, then provincial minister for population when the PTI came into power in KP. She was awarded the presidential gold medal in recognition of her services for children.
Fida Muhammad Khan remained the provincial president of PML-N and his brother Nisar Muhammad Khan was a PML-N senator. Fida Muhammad Khan announced to join the PTI in March 2015 after meeting with Imran Khan in Banigala.
The PTI has also awarded a ticket to Advocate General of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Abdul Latif Yousufzai.