RAWALPINDI - Despite tall claims of all the candidates to clinch the National Assembly seat (NA-55), the final showdown is likely between Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Shakil Awan and Awami Muslim League (AML) president Sh Rashid Ahmed, who is reportedly backed by the PPP city chapter. For both the PML-N and Sheikh Rashid Ahmed it is something more than the by-election as in case PML-N loses this election, it will cause irreparable loss to its growing popularity while the defeat will cost Sheikh Rashid Ahmed probably a full stop to his political career. However, the PPP local leaders dispelled the impression, saying that neither they received any signal from top leadership to support Rashid nor were supporting any candidate in the by-polls of NA-55. Nonetheless, political pundits insist that the PPP Jiyallas, on the nod of their big wheels, had decided to teach a lesson to PML (N) leadership by backing Sheikh Rashid Ahmed after its vicious campaign against the PPP Co-Chairman and President, Asif Ali Zardari to oust him and to end the myth that Pindi has become a castle of N-league. According to a survey conducted by TheNation on Sunday, all the contestants of the by-polls of NA-55 including PML-Ns Malik Shakil Awan, Awami Muslim League (AML)s Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Jammat-e-Islami (JI)s Dr Muhammad Kamal and Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI)s Ijaz Khan Jazi were busy in holding scores of meetings and taking out rallies to clinch pubic support as today (Monday ) will be the last day for electioneering as per the Election Commission of Pakistan(ECP) laws. Meanwhile, Pakistan Aman Party (PAP)s Haji Gulzar Awan and independent candidate Sheikh Danish Iftikhar, contrary to their opponents, were mainly focusing on door-to-door campaign and approaching business community to muster support of voters. But their chances to win the by-polls are fewer as all the eyes are focused on the thorny contest between PML-Ns candidate Malik Shakil Awan and AML President Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed. PML (N) leaders told TheNation that Malik Shakil had an edge over Sheikh Rahsid as Rawalpindi was considered a strong hold of the PML (N). PMl (N) facilitated people of the city much, they said. However, according to the views gathered by this scribe from general public of the NA-55 including labourers, students, tailors, vendors, teachers, transporters and the government employees that chances of Sheikh Rashid Ahmed are bright than Malik Shakil Awan, whose party made the fun of the Pindi two times, first by fielding an imported candidate Makhdoom Javed Hashmi while later fielding an uneducated candidate Haji Pervez, who was involved in the exam scandal. We only want to send a person this time in assembly who is local and our well wisher they added. Sheikh Rashid was and remains a hawk in the body politic of Pakistani policy making. Love him or like him, but all must admit that Sheikh Rashid is outspoken and a straight-shooter person. Sheikh Rashid did a lot for the betterment of Rawalpindi. Only polling day (February 24) will tell if Rashids Pindi style populism will win the popular votes. Sheikh Rashid, the mercurial, dynamic, and colourful student leader turned politician is tackling alone a brigade of PML (N) big guns busy in campaign of Malik Shakil Awan said an analyst who has a grip over Pakistani politics. He said that Ijaz Khan Jazi of PTI and Dr Muhammad Kamal of JI have also strong roots in the city and they would definitely break the PML-N vote bank that would be another blow to the PML (N). The chances of JI Dr Kamal should not be underestimated in the by-elections of NA-55. According to the candidate, his election campaign is going well and he would win with a big margin. He said that he would eliminate inflation and unemployment from the city and raise voice against US interference into Pakistani affairs after reaching in the Assembly. As today (Monday) will be the last day for election campaign of NA-55, PML-N Quaid Mian Nawaz Sharif, AML President Sheikh Rashid Ahmed and PTI Chief Imran Khan would address mammoth public gatherings in the city to convince the voters to get their candidates electED. JI candidate, Dr Muhammad Kamal would also hold a public gathering at Banni.