KARACHI - Dilapidated roads, lack of drinking water, worst kind of municipal conditions and absence of other necessities of civic life are words that could help describe the most populous constituencies of the mega city – NA-252.

The area is divided among two major ethnicities but both of them seem dejected from those who have ruled them.

“We have been voting for different parties but none of them improved our situation,” said Syed Nehal, a resident of Surjani Town. “If no one is interested in resolving our issues then why we should vote for anyone,” he added.

The constituency was formerly NA-243 and now, with some changes, it has been numbered as NA-252. The two provincial seats falling under it are PS-121 and PS-122.

NA-252 has a total population of 758,107 and 219,042 registered voters, according to Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

The number of male voters is 133,060 and female voters 85,982. As per the voter registration the constituency has 28.24 voters’ ratio.

The majority part of this national assembly constituency comprises slum localities dominated by Pushtuns and Baloch.

Some other localities are Manghopir, Sultanabad, Umar Goth, Halqani Goth, Khairabad, Haji Malik Goth, Surjani Town, Yusof Goth, Khuda ki Basti, Taiser Town, Kohsar Town, Bajar Bhatti, Gulshan-e-Maymar, Abdullah Goth, Gulshan-e-Zia Liaquat, Ghaziabad, Arkani Colony, Gulshan-e-Bihar sector-16, Gulshan-e-Bihar Market, UC-6 of Orangi Town, Al-Khizra Society and Gulshan-e-Ahbab.

In 2013 General Election, Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) candidate Abdul Wasim won from here by getting 67,119 votes while the runner up – Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s Zahid Hussain Hashmi – secured 11,255 votes.

It is believed the MQM has lost its strength after ban on its founder Altaf Hussain and further grouping within the MQM-P. A number of voters complain that the elected representatives of MQM did not pay heed on their issues and failed to solve their problems.

MQM-P’s General Councilor of UC 39, District West, alleged that Mayor Wasim Akhtar completely neglected the union council in last two years and their supporters have been expressing annoyance over the lack of development work as well as municipal services.

“A large number of supporters and voters have declined to vote ‘Kite’ (electoral symbol of MQM-Pakistan) this time around,” he added.

The voters of other union councils of the constituency are also angry with the MQM and they are not willing to vote for the party candidates.

The Manghopir area of the NA-252 has pockets that are well dominated by the supporters of the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan.

In recent past the area was considered ‘No-Go Area’ for both citizens and the law enforcement agencies. It has been cleared of militant elements to some extent through a series of operations.

Land-grabbing is another major issue of the entire constituency. Hundreds of illegal Goths were established by the local PPP leadership over time.

Illegal housing projects on government’s amnesty plots, later labelled as China Cutting, were also established by the MQM leadership. Recently, most of the land grabbers affiliated with different political forces have switched their loyalties and allegedly they are now being patronised by Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP).

For General Election 2018, MQM-P has nominated Abdul Qadir Khanzada for NA-252 while Basit Ahmed Siddiqui and Mazahir Ameer have been given tickets for provincial seats of PS-121 and PS-122.

PTI has fielded Aftab jehangir for NA-252, Jan Muhammad Gabol for PS-121 and Rabistan Khan for PS-122.

PSP of Mustafa Kamal has given tickets to Iftaikhar Akbar Randhawa for the NA seat and Sheikh Abdullah and Adeel Habib for the provincial seats. Abdullah is contesting for the same seat for the second time.

Abdul Khaliq Mirza will contest form NA-252 seat on the ticket of PPP while the party has fielded Akber Kachelo and Safdar Brohi on PS-121 and PS-122.

MQM-Haqeeqi has decided to contest only for the provincial seats. It has nominated Muhammad Naeem Qureshi for PS-121 and Haseena Amjad for PS-122.