TOBA TEK SINGH

According to the unofficial results of PP-89 by-election held on Wednesday, Pir Ali Baba of the PML-N has won the contest with a lead of 22,889 votes.

He secured 56,628 votes while defeated independent candidate could get 33,739 votes. There were 147 polling stations and total votes were 166,613 in this constituency.

However, former MNA and PTI leader Riaz Fatyana and the independent candidate alleged that the PP-89 by-poll had been massively rigged by the PML-N candidate.

Polling remained peaceful in the by-election of PP-89 on Wednesday at most of the polling stations however scuffles were also seen at some of the rural areas between the supporters of PML-N and an independent candidate.

Independent candidate Sonia ali Raza told newsmen that her name was published on ballot paper as “Sonia” instead of her full name “Makhdoomzadi Syeda Sonia Ali Raza Shah”.

Ex-MNA Riaz Fatyana claimed that ruling party supporters and government officials remained involved in rigging especially at women polling stations. Meanwhile, PML-N candidate Pir Ali Baba said that polling was held in peaceful environment while the allegation of rigging was baseless.

Till filing of the report, as per the unofficial results of 50 polling stations out of total 147, PML-N candidate Pir Ali Baba secured more than 20,000 votes while independent candidate supported by PTI could get 13,000 votes.

Despite holiday announced by DCO on the occasion of by-polling of PP-89, the candidates of BSc exams had to appear in their examination centre at Pirmahal Government Higher Secondary School.

Riaz Fatyana has said that vast level rigging was made in the polling of the by-election. While talking to newsmen, he said polling stations of various villages were occupied by the PML-N candidate’s supporters while the PTI-supported independent candidate’s poling agents were not allowed to sit in the polling stations.

He said most of the polling bags provided for the polling staff were already unsealed and Sonia’s polling agents were not told the total number of vote books supplied to the polling stations. At various polling stations, the voters were sent back with the excuse that vote books had been finished. He said several PML-N parliamentarians visited the polling stations in the late night to put pressure or bribe the polling staff who were staying in the buildings of polling stations, he alleged.

He accused district PTI organiser of asking the PTI workers on telephone to boycott the election of PP-89 although Sonia was declared PTI-supported candidate by party chief Imran Khan.

When contacted, examination staff told reporters that the paper was scheduled to be held under the auspices of Faisalabad GC University and no holiday was announced by the university so the paper was arranged in the centre.

DEATH: Sister of senior journalist Sultan Sidhu died after protracted illness Tuesday night in a Lahore hospital. Scores of citizens, journalists, lawyers and political activists attended her funeral prayer in Barianwala graveyard. Quran Khawani for the deceased will be held in Shalimar Town.