KARACHI - The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) on Wednesday allotted tickets to its candidates for the upcoming Senate elections after reaching a consensus with its coalition partner, the PPP on seat adjustment.

The party candidates who get tickets are: former City nazim Mustafa Kamal, and sitting Senator Tahir Mashdi have been nominated on general seats and former City naib nazima Nasreen Jalil on reserved seat for women while MQM’s senior legal advisor Barrister Farogh Naseem has been nominated on the seat of technocrats. The upcoming Senate elections are scheduled for March 2, thus the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) obtained 7 seats, four has been secured by the MQM and one seat has been allotted to the PML-F. As many as 12 Senate seats from Sindh would be vacant on March 11 2012, including three senators of MQM, who will be retired including senator Colonel (R) Tahir Mashedi, Senator Ahmed Ali and Senator Dr Abdul Khaliq Peerzada after completing their tenure.

Sources said that the MQM coordination committee London and Karachi in a brief meeting finalised the name of Mustafa Kamal, Nasreen Jalil, Tahir Mashdi and Barrister Farogh Naseem and announced after a final approval by MQM Chief Altaf Hussain.

Earlier, MQM’s former City naib nazima Nasreen Jalil and former Hyderabad district nazim Kunwar Naveed got nomination papers for contesting the upcoming Senate elections on Monday. The MQM aspirants including former City nazim Mustafa Kamal, Barrister Farogh Naseem, noted Industrialist Dr Arshad Vohra and party’s women wing leader Naela Latif also obtained nomination forms from the office of Provincial Commission. The MQM is expected to retain its strength of six Senators as it would get three of its nominees elected while a similar number of its senators will retire on March 11, 2012. The PPP has a simple majority in the 168-seat Sindh Assembly with 91 members followed by MQM’s 51. The breakaway PML-Q has 11, PML-Functional eight, National People’s Party 3 and the Awami National Party two.

These smaller parties are either divided internally or have a covert understanding with the PPP to support nominees for the Senate.

Under this scenario, the ruling PPP is eying 10 of the 12 seats from Sindh - a target that would help its larger ambition to secure a large presence in the Upper House after the Senate elections.