Pakistan

Interesting and unusual happenings during LG polls

The first phase of local government elections in 12 districts of Punjab and eight districts of Sindh culminated relatively peacefully – but some unusual happenings or perhaps interesting goings-on during balloting differentiate the LG polls from conventional electoral process.

General perception prevailed before the polls that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf may give a tough-time to its major opponent PML-N, but hardly a few ones expected the unexpected drubbing of Imran Khan-led party in the first phase of local elections.

 

Toss to decide a winner

 

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Looking for luck, the candidates in couple of constituencies getting equal number of votes opted for a toss to decide triumphant. They may have Misbahul Haq, Pakistan Test team skipper, in mind who is also having a great luck when it comes to toss.

In UC-13, two candidates bagged equal votes — 2,670 votes. The winner was decided after a toss. Aftab Hussain Gujjar was then selected chairman and Abduttawwab was elected vice chairman.

Similarly in Ward 6 in UC-180, the winner was finalized on the basis of a toss for slot of general councillor. Both the candidates had received 307 votes. Abdul Ghaffoor was selected general councillor after the toss.

 

Saeen visit keeps voters in queue for 7 hours!

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Heavy security was put in place before arrival of Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah. And because of stringent security arrangements at the polling station in Khairpur where the Sindh CM was to cast his vote, voters were stopped for over seven hours.

The total number of registered voters at this polling station was 1,088. How precious was one vote of the CM sahib!

 

Horse-riding voter

 

It is often said that voters don’t turn up in large numbers in by-polls or local government elections in contrary to general elections. Can you imagine an enthusiastic voter coming to exercise his balloting right, riding a horse? This actually happened in Punjab yesterday.

A voter made his way into the polling station area to cast his vote,

 

Voter without (age) border

 

 

Anything can happen in Pakistan during elections. A child is said to have cast his vote at a polling booth in Lahore elections. The toddler arrived at a polling station with a strut, cast his vote before a presiding officer and left.

The officials could only gaze and later forgot – may be thinking that “if only a single vote could bring about revolution in the country”.

 

Independents rout PTI in Punjab

 

It was not just the PML-N show in the local elections. In fact the PTI trailed behind independent candidates in vote tally. The latter secured second position by getting 1,065 seats.

To everyone’s shock, PTI could only manage to grab 285 seats.

Debates over ‘shrinking’ popularity of PTI in the Punjab circle is now certainly a talk of the town. On the other side, Insafians are hoping for the best in upcoming two phases of LG polls – especially in Punjab.

 

PTI leader concedes defeat, steps down

 

In another major development or arguably an important one, senior PTI leader Shaafqat Mahmood stepped down as PTI’s Lahore organizer.

He announced this decision for media and party supporters through a micro-blogging website Twitter.

 

Women, please stay away from voting!

 

Women at union councils 55, 56 and UC Dholar in tehsil Talla Gang, were not allowed to use their right to vote according to the local tradition. A Jirga of the local influentials have prohibited women to cast their votes.

The women in the area have been denied the right to vote for last 35 years but no political party has raised the issue, local people said.

According to a graphic posted on social media by the UNDP, women make up 44 per cent of voters in Punjab.

Furthermore, 15 per cent of seats in union councils in Punjab have been reserved for women.

– Photos by; Pyar Ali

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