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Sunday July 14, 2024

Triangular battle in NA-154 Lodhran-I as key clans hold sway

Siddique Kanju (late) group, led by his son and former state minister Abdur Rehman Kanjo, wields significant influence in constituency

By Nadeem Shah
February 02, 2024
Former state minister Abdur Rehman Kanjo speaks with the gathering of supporters on February 1, 2024, in NA-154 Lodhran-I. — Facebook/PML-N Lodhran Shaheed Kanju Group
Former state minister Abdur Rehman Kanjo speaks with the gathering of supporters on February 1, 2024, in NA-154 Lodhran-I. — Facebook/PML-N Lodhran Shaheed Kanju Group

MULTAN: A tough and intriguing triangular fight is expected in NA-154 Lodhran-I among archrivals.

The constituency boasts a sizable vote bank of the Tehreek Labaik Pakistan, ranging from 4,000 to 10,000 votes, as reported by political workers.

The alignment and realignment of biradris (traditional clans) play a crucial role in the election, with major clans in the constituency being Kanjus, Balochs, Noons, Baigs, Nawabs, Tareens, Syeds, and Khans.

The Siddique Kanju (late) group, led by his son and former state minister Abdur Rehman Kanjo, wields significant influence in the constituency. Abdur Rehman Kanju's real uncle, Akhtar Kan Kanju, was initially a strong candidate running independently after fielding his nomination from the PTI, but he has since withdrawn.

The Kanju family holds a formidable political sway in the area, with Abdur Rehman Kanju having served twice as the district nazim and twice as a federal minister of state. After the withdrawal of Akhtar Khan Kanju, the PTI has nominated Rana Faraz Noon, who also comes from a politically active background.

The constituency comprises Tehsil Kahror Pacca areas, including Kahror Pacca Tehsil and Dunyapur Tehsil, with certain exclusions.

The registered voters for 2024, according to the Election Commission of Pakistan draft electoral rolls, stand at a total of 558,667, including 300,359 male and 258,308 female voters. In 2018, the constituency had 456,024 registered voters, with 257,646 male and 198,378 female voters.Contesting in the 2024 elections are 10 candidates, including Imdadullah Abbasi (PPP), former state minister of interior Abdur Rehman Khan Kanju (PMLN), Muhammad Zubair (TLP), and Asmat Bibi (Markazi Muslim League).

The independents include Rana Muhammad Afzal Noon, Zafar Iqbal, Irfan Ahmed, Muhammad Ajmal Kanju, and Rana Muhammad Faraz Noon.The constituency has a history of tough one-to-one and triangular contests in past elections, with two bypolls held in 2015 and 2018.

In 2015, Jahangir Khan Tareen won the seat for the PTI, while in 2018, PMLN's Syed Muhammad Iqbal Shah secured the victory.In the 2018 elections, Abdul Rahman Khan Kanju of the PMLN won the seat, with Muhammad Akhtar Khan Kanju contesting on the PTI ticket. In 2013, Muhammad Siddique Khan Baloch won as an independent candidate, and in 2008, Muhammad Saddique Khan Baloch of the PML secured the seat.

The constituency has seen varying results over the years, making it a closely watched battleground in each election cycle.