MULTAN/BAHAWALPUR

A group of enraged PTI workers laid siege to the residence of party’s central leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi against what they described as unjust distribution of tickets for the local bodies elections here on Wednesday.

The PTI workers from UC 67 vowed to continue the siege and observe hunger strike if their candidate was not issued ticket. They had started gathering outside Shah Mahmood’s residence since Tuesday night.

“The parliamentary board of the party for NA-151 nominated our candidate Chaudhry Asif Irshad for the ticket but the ticket was issued to Malik Jahanzeb Bucha instead,” the protester lamented while talking to The Nation.

The candidates, who were denied the party tickets, expressed strong reaction as the PTI started issuing tickets to its prospective candidates for December 5 local government election in Multan. The female workers of PTI threw chairs on one another on ticket dispute in party’s district office the other day while male workers exchanged hot words.

The protesters disclosed that they turned down a dialogue offer from Shah Mahmood Qureshi. “We do not want to hold any talks behind closed doors. If he (Shah Mahmood) wants to say anything, he should come out and say it publicly,” they added.

Talking to this scribe, district organiser of PTI Ijaz Janjua said that neither the parliamentary board nominated Ch Asif Irshad nor he was promised a ticket. “Four members of the board nominated Ch Asif Irshad while five supported Malik Jahanzeb Bucha. So the latter was issued the ticket,” he claimed.

According to the final list issued for the local body elections of Bahawalpur, 238 candidates for chairman, 1,119 for councillor, 279 for Municipal Committee member slots will contest the elections. For local body elections, a total of 576 polling stations have been established. For the elections, 817,446 voters will use their right to vote from which 453,723 are male and 363,723 are females.