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Imran, Mengal demand in-depth investigation into alleged election rigging in May 11 polls

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) have agreed to raise the issue of alleged election rigging and jointly demanded a detailed, in-depth investigation into what they claim the theft of their mandate on May 11 by candidates of rival parties.

A meeting was held in Bani Gala Islamabad between PTI chairman Imran Khan and BNP-M chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal, who led a four-member delegation of his party, to discuss their plan.

Both the leaders decided to meet again, after Khan’s visit to the UK where he will be staying till July 24, to further discuss how to effectively raise their demand for investigation, sources said.

The PTI chief is leaving for London on Monday for a medical check-up and to spend some time with his sons.

A PTI leader said the two leaders had agreed to join hands to keep the issue of rigging alive until the Election Commission took corrective measures.

“The PTI doesn’t want to derail the democratic dispensation but rectification of the voting procedures will boost voters’ confidence in democracy,” Khan was quoted as saying.

Mengal said the two parties also wanted local government elections held in time and steps taken by the ECP to avoid a repetition of mismanagement which had marred the general elections. The ECP, he said, should seriously take notice of their complaints.

While the PTI has demanded biometric-based re-count of votes in four National Assembly constituencies, the BNP-M wants re-checking of votes cast for its candidates in Balochistan. The two parties have held protest rallies, criticising ECP’s failure to conduct free and fair elections.

The BNP-M has won one National Assembly and two Balochistan Assembly seats.

The NA constituencies where the PTI claimed its candidates were in winning position in the initial vote count, but declared runners-up in official results include NA 125 and 122 in Lahore, NA 154 (Lodhran) and NA 57 (Attock). The NA 122 was won by Speaker Ayaz Sadiq with a lead of around 9,000 votes. This was the only seat Mr Khan lost out of the four he had contested.

The PTI media wing said the two leaders had agreed that suitable changes in the electoral process was the only way to ensure that people’s will was truly reflected.

They shared their reservations over the conduct of ECP and electoral staff and stressed the need for introducing changes in the system to establish credibility of the election process.

“Both the leaders observed that ample evidence of corruption in the electoral process has been properly registered across the country on the basis of which the authorities should respond properly,” the PTI said.

The two parties agreed that the lingering issue of missing persons and ever-deteriorating law and order situation needed immediate attention to make Balochistan an equally prosperous part of the federation.

Asad Haroon
A netpreneur, blogger and above all; A Human :) Asad tweets from @aghaasadharoon and can also be approached on Google+

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