SIALKOT-The electioneering is gaining momentum in all the 85 far-off Bajwat border villages falling in NA-72 constituency as both the rival candidates are going door-to-door to lure their voters and supporters.
Both the PML-N and PTI has fielded old faces in the constituency. PML-N's candidate Chaudhry Armughan Subhani and PTI's candidate Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan are flexing their political muscles while visiting the local voters and holding their corner meetings.
Neck and neck contest is expected between PML-N's candidate Ch Armughan Subhani and PTI candidate Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan in NA-72. Local political pundits expect that it would be a big contest in this constituency as ten candidate including two female candidates - PTI's Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan and MMA's Parveen Akhtar are in the race for NA-72.
MMA has fielded its female candidate Parveen Akhtar to give "tough time" to PTI's candidate. PPP has fielded Syed Ishtiaqul Hassan Gillani in the constituency. While, six other independent candidates - Syed Abbas Ali Shah, Khurram Ejaz, Ch Tariq Subhani (Variyo family's scion), Mian Naeem Javaid (former Sialkot District Nazim), Nasar Ullah and Mian Abid Javaid are also in the run for NA-72.
This is the native constituency of Chaudhry Ameer Hussain, the former Punjab Assembly speaker, who had submitted nomination papers for contesting these polls as an independent candidate after PTI did not award him ticket. But, he withdrew his nomination papers as he himself is not contesting general elections 2018.
A couple years ago, Ch Ameer Hussain had joined PTI after defection from the PML-Q camp. Later, PPP's Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan also joined PTI who succeeded in getting PTI ticket.
Prevailing political situation in constituency (NA 72, Sialkot-I) has resulted in the ouster of Ch Ameer Hussain from local political scenario.
Both of the "big guns" have launched a vigorous campaign, going door to door in the constituency to woo voters and muster maximum support with renewed pledges to serve people as their true servants.
It is, though, a fact that the media has made people well aware and matured politically, but "Biradarism" still is playing a leading role ahead of the July 25, 2018 general elections in NA-72 (Sialkot-I).
This constituency consists of all 85 Bajwat villages and other adjoining areas. There are Gujjar, Araiyeen, Jutt and Awan Biradaries in majority in this constituency. Almost all the main political parties have fielded their potential candidates, belonging to these Biradaries.
PML-N has again fielded Chaudhry Armughan Subhani, the former MNA, who belongs to the leading Gujjar Biradari. PTI has also brought Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan in election race as she belongs to Awan Biradari. Local PTI leader Ch Ameer Hussain who also belongs to Gujjar Biradari, has great influence in affecting vote bank.
Another main Araiyeen Biradari is also very active here. Mian Naeem Javaid (former Sialkot District Nazim) belongs to Araiyeen Biradari. He was also contesting these polls as an independent candidate against PTI's candidate Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan with support of his Araiyeen Biradari. Local Araiyeen Biradari is seemed to be annoyed with PTI candidate Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan who replaced the party Mian Abid Javaid, an Araiyeen Biradari member. Dr Firdous has brought a candidate of her choice Mirza Dilawar Baig for the Punjab Assembly in the constituency.
In 2013 general elections, PML-N's candidate Ch Armughan Subhani) had won by getting 136,991 votes in the constituency, the then NA-111. He had defeated Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan who was a PPP and secured 51,230 votes. While, PTI's candidate M Ajmal Cheema had got 31,099 votes and MQM's candidate Razia Iqbal could get only 603. In 2008 general elections, the PPP's candidate Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan had won by getting 78,925 votes. She had defeated PML-Q's candidate Ch Ameer Hussain who got 46,372 votes while PML-N's candidate Idrees Ahmed Bajwa had got 38,193 votes.
Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan is stated to be famous for changing political parties "in the larger interest of the people of her constituency." She was elected as PML-Q's MNA on special seat after 2002 general elections. Later, she joined PPP and contested 2008 and 2013 general elections as PPP candidate. Now, she is contesting 2018 general elections as PTI candidate.