Over 300 candidates are contesting the by-elections on 11 NA and 24 provincial assembly seats today (Sunday).
Polling began at 8am and continued till 5pm under the supervision of the Pakistan Army and police.
In Karachi’s 243, PTI’s Alamgir Khan is up against MQM-Pakistan’s Aamir Chishti and PML-N’s Saad Rafique is facing PTI’s Humayun Akhtar in Lahore’s NA-131.
Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is up against PTI’s Ghulam Mohiuddin in NA-124.
Another interesting contest is expected in Chakwal’s NA-65 where PML-Q leader Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain is facing the TLP’s Muhammad Yaqoob.
The Election Commission of Pakistan has declared 1,727 polling stations highly sensitive.
This is the first time overseas Pakistanis cast their votes in the by-elections. About 76% people cast their votes online.
Polling in Lahore’s NA-124 Ravi Town did not begin at 8am.
PSP’s Mustafa Kamal addressed the media and asked people to come out and vote in the by-election. Only we know Karachi’s problems, he said.
PML-N leader Uzma Bukhari said she hopes everyone will do their work properly and the candidates will get their due rights. We have learned from the July 25 elections, she said.
Polling in PK-78 Zargarabad in Peshawar was stopped because the presiding officer said the voter list is incorrect. The names of 900 voters weren’t on the list, however, after an hour or so, a new list was issued and all registered voters were able to cast their votes.
At polling station number eight in PK-7 Swat, there are 1,301 registered women voters but none have cast their votes so far.
The turnout at polling station’s in Lahore’s Defence is very low. At one polling station, only 200 of the 2,900 registered voters cast their votes. At another polling station, only 100 voters cast their votes.
Former premier Nawaz Sharif couldn’t cast his vote in Lahore’s NA-124 as he forgot to carry his identity card. Prime Minister Imran Khan cast his vote in NA-53 Islamabad at around 12:40pm.
Former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi told SAMAA TV that the turnout seems a little low but that’s expected in by-elections. Speaking in Lahore’s NA-124, he said there are issues in these elections. He said there are soldiers stationed inside polling stations who are checking voters’ ID cards and papers and other stationed right next to ballot boxes. He said that security should be outside.
I complained to the ECP about this before and today as well but nothing is being done, he said.
In NA-243 Karachi, the turnout was very low. However, political workers were present at the election camps in large numbers.
The car of the PTI candidate for PS-222 (Multan) was damaged in a case of electoral violence. Rana Sohail Noon was returning to his car after casting his vote at the Jalalpur Pirwala polling station when his car was attacked with stones. It is being said that the those responsible for attack were supporters of independent candidate Shazia Abbas Khakhi.