Thursday July 25, 2024

PTI-backed Alamgir Khan polling just 1,154 votes in District East surprises many

By Yousuf Katpar
February 10, 2024

The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), which could not win any National Assembly seat from District East in the last general elections, has been able to clinch three of the four seat, according to unofficial results announced by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). The remaining seat of the district has been won by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP).

Supporters of the PTI party shout slogans and protest to demand the release of Pakistan’s jailed former prime minister Imran Khan, in Karachi on January 28, 2024. (AFP)
Supporters of the PTI party shout slogans and protest to demand the release of Pakistan’s jailed former prime minister Imran Khan, in Karachi on January 28, 2024. (AFP)

In a quite surprising development, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-backed independent candidate Alamgir Khan, who had secured District East's NA-236 seat in the by-election after it was vacated by former prime minister and PTI founding chairman Imran Khan following the latter’s victory in the last general elections, could only bag 1,154 votes this time, as per the ECP.

According to the final results (Form-47) issued by the ECP, Hassan Sabir of the MQM-P emerged victorious in NA-236 after obtaining 38,871 votes.

The Pakistan Peoples Party's (PPP) Muzammil Qureshi was the runner-up with 32,231 votes.

The Jamaat-i-Islami's Osama Razi Khan bagged 21,082 votes and came third and the PTI-backed Alamgir could secure only 1,154 votes.

Pakistan Defence Qaumi Movement’s Sabeen Malik obtained 5,765 votes, while independent candidates Manzoor Hussain and Sadia Qaiser bagged 5,132 and 4,060 votes, respectively, which were even higher than those obtained by Alamgir.

Of the total 542,409 registered voters in the constituency, 135,215 cast their ballots on Feb 8. The voter turnout was 24.93 per cent, while 51 votes were rejected.

The constituency, which was previously NA-243 East, was won by former prime minister and founding chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan with a thumping majority of 91,373 votes in the 2018 elections. After Imran vacated the seat, it was retained by the PTI as its candidate Alamgir won the subsequent by-election. In the 2013 and 2008 elections, the MQM had won this seat.

In a video statement released by the PTI on social media platform X, Khan claimed: "We obtained around 100,000 votes as per the form 45 issued by presiding officers of polling stations in Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Cantonment Faisal and Gulistan-e-Jauhar areas falling in NA-236 but the Election Commission of Pakistan reduced our votes to 1,154. They robbed us of 100,000 votes. There could not be a greater mockery of democracy than this."

As per the form 45, he added that the PTI polled over 4,800 in just 10 polling stations set up at the FBR income tax building in Gulistan-e-Jauhar while the winning candidate of the MQM-P could bag 200 votes there. He requested his constituents to come out to protest peacefully against the results outside the ECP office.

Other NA seats

As per the initial results issued by the ECP, Muhammad Iqbal Khan of the MQM-P emerged victorious in NA-235 after bagging 20,185 votes. The PTI-backed independent candidate Saifur Rehman was the runner-up with 14,167 votes.

Muhammad Asif Khan of the PPP secured 11,429 votes and came third.

Dr Meraj Ul Huda Siddiqui of the JI obtained 6,652 and Sharafat Khan of the PML-N 5,041.

Of the total 170,181 registered voters, 68,931 cast their ballots, showing 40.5 per cent voter turnout.

In the 2018 elections, the PTI’s Saifur Rehman had emerged victorious in this constituency with 27,502 votes, PPP's Muhammad Iqbal Sand was the runner-up with 11,824 votes and Asadullah Bhutto of the Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) came third with 8,262 votes.

In NA-237, the PPP’s Asad Alam Niazi won after bagging 40,836 votes. The PTI-backed independent candidate Zahoor Uddin obtained 33,321 votes and came second. The JI's Irfan Ahmed obtained 22,256 votes and the MQM-P's Rauf Siddiqui 15,412.

A total of 147,611 votes were polled in this constituency, of which 2,902 were rejected. The voter turnout was 35.66 per cent.

In the 2018 general elections, the PTI's Syed Ali Haider Zaidi had won this seat by bagging 69,480 votes. The PML-N's Miftah Ismail was the runner-up with 31,247 votes.

In the three consecutive general elections prior to the 2018 polls, then united MQM secured victory in this constituency with its candidates Safwanullah, Wasim Akhtar and Syed Ali Raza Abidi getting elected in the 2002, 2008 and 2013 general elections respectively.

In NA-238, the MQM-P's Sadiq Iftikhar won after bagging 54,884 votes. Sindh PTI President Haleem Adil Sheikh was the runner up with 36,875 votes. Saifuddin of the JI obtained 36,280 votes.

The TLP's Mohammad Wasim obtained 10,594 votes and PPP's Pir Omer Uddin Zafar 10,464 votes. Of the total 171,434 polled votes, 3,141 were rejected. The turnout stood at 30.49 per cent.

Mahmood Baqi Moulvi, who was associated with the PTI at that time, had won the NA seat by securing 29,522 votes in the August 21, 2022 by-election marred by a low turnout. It had fallen vacant following the demise of televangelist and politician Aamir Liaquat Hussain.

In the 2018 general elections, Hussain had won the seat by bagging 56,673 votes on the PTI’s ticket and Farooq Sattar was the runner-up with 35,429 votes. Before that, the MQM's Rasheed Godil had won the 2008 and 2013 elections when the party was controlled by its London-based founder. Mohammad Hussain Mehanti of the MMA had won the seat in the 2002 general elections.