LAHORE - The Majalis Wahadtul Muslimeen (MWM) and the Jamiat Ulmae Pakistan-Niazi (JUP-N) announced Friday to support Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf in upcoming by-polls in Lahore but the PTI has not been assured of Jamaat-e-Islami’s support so far.

All the three parties, though, had not significant number of voters in the constituency but their announcements could have psychological impact on the PML-N. The by-polls in NA-122 has much importance for both the parties as its result can damage the loser. PTI leader Ch Muhmmad Sarwar and Mian Mahmoodur Rasheed visited Mansoora (JI head-office) yesterday to get support of the Jamaat.

However, the JI leaders Dr Farid Paracha and Mian Maqsood had not assured the PTI that it would support its candidate in by-polls. “The Jamaat-e-Islami cannot openly support PTI in by-polls in Lahore. It is likely that Jamaat will ask its voters in the area to choose their own candidate for vote,” said JI insider.

As per a statement issued by the PTI, the party formally requested Jamaat-e-Islami to side by it in these crucial elections. “PTI Punjab organiser Ch Sarwar and opposition leader in Punjab Assembly Mian Mahmood ur Rasheed went to see Lahore Ameer of Jamat-e-Islami Mian Maqsood and Deputy Secretary General Fareed Paracha. Jamaat leaders sought time to respond to the request,” it stated.

The same day, JI chief Sirajul Haq also cautiously hinted that Jamaat was not giving very much importance to the election in Lahore. Talking to journalist in Mansoora, he said the PML (N) and the PTI not to make the by-election a matter of ego. He said the number of banners put up both sides in the constituency indicated that the two sides had crossed the ceiling of the permissible expenditure.

He said the leadership of the PTI and the PML (N) had approached the JI and it had authorised its local unit to decide the issue on its own. He however said that a by election could not be given importance like the general elections.

Meanwhile, Ch Sarwar along with candidate from NA122 Abdul Aleem Khan and Jamshed Iqbal Cheema also met with Deputy Secretary General of MWM Allama Iqbal Kamrani and other leaders of the MWM. The party declared to support PTI candidates in by-polls. The two parties also struck a deal on seat arrangement in upcoming Local Government elections in Punjab.Ch Sarwar thanked MWM for its outright support to PTI and said the time had come to fight against the menaces of corruption, bad governance and status-quo. He was of the opinion that all well wishers of the country must be united in their battle for the rights of people.

No country can progress unless the rule of law and basic facilities are ensured, Ch Sarwar commented while lamenting over inefficiency of present governments in Punjab and center. He said that all federal and provincial government offices were being used by PML-N to campaign for ruling party but PTI would not let anybody steal the mandate of people and would stand the ground.

Responding to a question, he said the land grabbing mafias were still more powerful in Punjab and government was complacent in their illegal activities.

He said PTI would hold a big event on October 9 and he would love to see JI Ameer Sirajul Haq joining this jalsa and supporting the stance of PTI.