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Tuesday April 16, 2024

PTI dream of majority in NA is a far cry

It is also pertinent to mention that PTI claims of winning over 180 NA seats, forms notion of rigging in almost 90 NA seats

By Kasim Abbasi
February 24, 2024
PTIs candidate for PM Umar Ayub addresses a press conference in Islamabad along with other senior leaders of the party on February 18, 2024. — APP
PTI's candidate for PM Umar Ayub addresses a press conference in Islamabad along with other senior leaders of the party on February 18, 2024. — APP

ISLAMABAD: The PTI’s dream of achieving the benchmark of full majority in the National Assembly of Pakistan is now only a matter of ifs and buts.

If ECP favours PTI in all 35 National Assembly seats where its independents who lost have filed cases, and on the other hand, ECP also saves PTI independents from cases filed against their wins, only then PTI will be able to reach close to getting a full majority in the National Assembly of Pakistan.

It is also pertinent to mention here that PTI claims of winning over 180 National Assembly seats and forms a notion of rigging in almost 90 NA seats. However, out of these 90 National Assembly seats where PTI believes it has actually won, only 35 independent candidates have filed cases for rechecking of votes and other procedures before the ECP.

Why the rest of 55 PTI’s backed up independents - who think have lost due to unfair and unjust elections - have not filed cases before the ECP. Barrister Gohar Ali Khan chairman PTI, Sher Afzal Khan Marwat and Raoof Hassan, PTI secretary, were contacted by The News for their views on the matter. Nevertheless, none responded despite repeated attempts.

A total of 35 PTI backed up independent candidates who have lost elections from the National Assembly have registered complaints for recounting of votes from their respective constituencies, reveals ECP official data.

This means if the decision comes in favour of all these 35 independent candidates which will increase PTI seats to a total number of 129 from the National Assembly, only then PTI will be able to reach close to the full majority number that is 133.

The cause list published by ECP reflects that the total number of cases fixed for hearing regarding recounting of votes were 133 from all the assemblies. According to the official data, the cases were fixed for hearing on 11, 19, 20 and 23 February by the ECP.

On February 11, the total number of fixed cases for hearing before ECP were 24 out of which nine involved candidates running from the National Assembly. Only one case represented candidates other than PTI’s independents who appealed before ECP and that is no other than Nawaz Sharif who lost from Mansehra seat NA-15. Nawaz has appealed for ballot recheck against PTI’s independent who defeated him in Mansehra.

On February 19, a total of 49 cases were fixed for hearing before ECP. Out of these, 22 were regarding seats from the National Assembly. And out of these 22, 11 were from independent candidates leaving the four other independents who had already filed cases and were fixed for hearing before ECP. Here too, some cases were against PTI’s independents.

On February 20, a total of 40 cases were fixed for hearing out of which 18 were regarding candidates running for the National Assembly. Out of these, 16 were from independent candidates while only two were from PMLN. While the remaining two cases were also from independent candidates but who had already appealed earlier, and their cases were fixed before the ECP.

And lastly on 23rd February, a total of 20 cases were fixed for hearing before ECP. Among them, a total of six cases were regarding National Assembly seats while no case was filed by PTI’s backed independents on 23rd. However, all six were filed against PTI independents who had won polls in their respective constituencies.

Accumulatively, the cases fixed for hearing till now involve a total of 35 independent candidates who were to represent their constituencies from the National Assembly who have lost elections and appealed against rigging before ECP.