DERA GHAZI KHAN

Low turnout is expected in Dera Ghazi Khan District owing to the ongoing wheat harvesting, improper election campaigns, fewer numbers of the polling stations and voters' lack of interest in the rural and the tribal belts.

Besides migration of the tribesmen from Suleman Ranges to the plain areas would be another factor for the lower turnout. Political circles and a large number of the contestants believe that improper location of the polling stations and scattered population will hugely affect the turnout on polling day.

The turnover during 2002 elections remained 45 percent in NA-171 and seven contestants of the constituency failed to bring the voters to the polling stations. Hardly 141,763 votes were cast out of the total 314,919 registered votes while 3,973 votes were rejected.

During 2008 General Elections, the turnover stood at 44.50 when the number of candidates was ten and 169,748 votes were cast out of total 381,343 registered votes in the district.

However, the number of rejected votes rose to 7,114 votes this time.

In NA-172, 36.70 percent turnout was recorded during 2002 general election when the number of polled votes was 111,845 against the registered 305,066 votes.  The situation further deteriorated during the 2008 general elections when the turnout was observed 34.30 percent out of the total 392,109 registered votes. However, 4,616 votes were dropped out of the total 134,348 votes.

In NA-173, total 113,205 votes were casted out of 282633 votes during 2008 elections and the turnout stood at 40.10 percent while it improved a bit during the 2008 general elections when it was recorded 41.90 percent.  By that time, the total number of the registered voters was 334,228, however; 140,041 votes could cast their vote.

The political pundits also believe that the weather was supportive during the last two general elections but this time rise in the mercury level could lower the overall turn out of the votes. Although around fifty percent harvesting had been completed but hundreds of the families were still away from their constituency engaged in wheat thrashing activities that might bar them from using their right of vote on May 11.