KARACHI/HYDERABAD: Following Jamaat-e-Islami’s boycott, other political and politico-religious parties also announced to pull their candidates out of the polling race because of vote-rigging in Karachi and Hyderabad.
Jamaat-e-Islami was the first to announce boycott from two major cities of Sindh, Karachi and Hyderabad, blaming MQM for rigging in elections.
JI chief Syed Munnawar Hasan, while addressing a press conference along with other party leaders, said that JI supporters were not allowed to cast their votes in various polling stations.
The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has also expressed its doubts in elections, saying that rigging is being carried in Karachi under an effective planning.
Addressing a press conference, senior PPP leaders Taj Haider said election results in Karachi would be tampered and rigged.
The Muttahida Quami Movement also complained for rigging, and later announced to boycott the polls from NA-248 constituency where Nabil Gabol, who has recently joined the party, was contesting polls.
Addressing a press conference, MQM’s Farooq Sattar alleged that rigging is underway at some polling stations of Karachi.
MQM chief Altaf Hussain telephoned Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G. Ebrahim complained about delay in the start of polling in various constituencies.
Chief of Muhajir Qaumi Movement-Haqeeqi (MQM-H) Afaq Ahmed announced to boycott general elections in Karachi, saying that the polling was not being held free and fair.
The MQM-H had fielded its 11 candidates for NA and 15 for PS seats in Karachi.
Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) also pulled its candidates out of the polling race in Karachi. The SIC alleged that rigging is being carried out in an organized way.
Another key religious party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan (JUP) followed the suit.
During a press conference, JUP central leader Sahibzada Abul-khair Muhammad Zubair bemoaned the rigging in Karachi and Hyderabad and announced to boycotts from the two cities.
Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI), the most popular party among youngsters, faced the same situation in Karachi, but only announced to boycott elections from Hyderabad.
“Received massive complains today, 90 percent were PML-N, harassing women and 9 percent MQM terrorism and 1 percent others,” said chief of PTI Imran Khan, Pakistan’s best-known sportsman, in his message on Twitter.
“Pakistan is witnessing a historic turnout today. We demand from ECP that voting time be extended to allow all voters to exercise their vote,” he said.
Meanwhile, Majlis-e-Wahdat-ul-Muslimee (MWM), an alliance of Shia parties, announced the same decision.
In Balochistan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Nazriyati) leader Maulana Abdul Qadir Loni announced to boycott elections.
Another party of the province, Jamhoori Wattan Party, also announced to stay away from polls over rigging.