After fielding a strong candidate for National Assembly seat NA-23 Kohistan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam is flexing its muscle to win this lone seat of National Assembly and three seats of Provincial Assembly. However its rival Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz  (PML-N) is also geared up to give tough time to the JUI-F candidates.

Administratively, Kohistan have been divided into four Tehsils, which include Tehsil Dassu, Tehsil Patan, Tehsil Palas and Tehsil Kandia while politically, the districts mainly divided into three constituencies of Provincial Assembly, comprising PK-61, PK-62 and PK-63 and lone constituency of the National Assembly NA-23.

District Kohistan is one of the most attractive but deprived district not only in Hazara Division but also in the entire province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Geographically, Kohistan is surrounded by Swat from West, Chilas, Darial and Tangir from North and Naran, Kaghan and Alai valleys from South and East sides.

In 2002 general elections, Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) secured this single seat of National Assembly and two provincial assembly seats of the district. The National Assembly seat won by Maulana Abdul Haleem with 15,603 votes, his runner up Mehboobullah Jan of PML-Q secured 10,630 votes, Abbas Sarfraz Khan, independent got 7915 votes, Muhammad Aslam, independent got 3,143 votes and Afzal Khan of PPP secured 436 votes.

Among three provincial assembly seats Dildar Khan of MMA was elected on PK-61, Mohammad Asmatullah Khan of MMA elected on PK-62, and Sardar Ayub Khan got elected as independent candidate from PK-63.

In 2008 general elections, the National Assembly seat was won by an independent candidate Mahboobullah Jan. Others member of provincial assembly who won PK seats include Maulana Ubedullah and his nephew Sajjadullah of ANP PK-61, Mahmood Alam of Pakistan People’s Party parliamentarian (PPPP) from PK-62 and Abdul Sattar of Pakistan Muslim League(PML-N) from PK-63.

This time JUI-F has awarded party ticket to former member National Assembly, Mahboobullah Jan who will face Pakistan Muslim League(PML-N) candidate Malik Saeed Ahmad, Pakistan People’s Party candidate and former MPA Mahmood Alam, Abdul Ghafoor of Muttahida Dini Mahaz, Malak Orangzeb Khan of Pakistan Muslim League(PML-Q) and Sarzamin Khan an independent candidate.

For provincial assembly seat of PK-61 Jamiat Uelma-e-Islam has awarded party ticket to former MPA Sajjadullah who will face Silahuddin of PML-N, Abdul Qayum Khan of Awami National Party, Kifayatullah Khan of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf , Sarangzeb Khan Khan of Pakistan Muslim League(PML-Q)  and Abdul Haq Khan, independent candidate.

On PK-62 Maulana Asmatullah of Jamiat Uema-e-Islam (JUI-F) will face Mohammad Siraj of Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), Dr Saif-ur-Rahman of Pakistan People’s Party Ali Gohar of Qaumi Watan Party, Fayaz Khan of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Sher Baz Khan of ANP, Ghulm Nabi of MQM, and Haji Muslim Shah of Jamaat-e-Islami. Likewise, on PK-63 Kohistan III, Abdul Sattar, former MPA of PML-N will face a independent candidate Malik Sar Mukhtiar, Habib-ur-Rahman of JUI, Asadullah Qureshi of QWP, Haji Afareen Khan of PTI and Tajan Khan of ANP.

Local journalist from District Kohistan Abdul Hakeem told TheNation that ANP and PTI have not fielded any candidate for NA seat. He said that though financial position of Mahboobullah Jan is much strong as compared to PML-N candidate Malik Saeed Ahmad. However, Malik Saeed Ahmad has an edge over his political rival for NA-23. He said though the position of JUI is strong on PK-61 but the other two constituencies of PK-62 and PK-63 are dominated by PML-N candidate Abdul Sattar Khan and Mohammad Siraj respectively.

It is pertinent to mention here that Sajjadullah who is nephew of Maulana Obedullah has won bye-elections on tickets of ANP from PK-61 while later he jumped into JUI. The seat fall vacant when his uncle and ANP affiliated member of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Maulana Obaidullah died of cardiac arrest.  Late on, Maulana Obedullah had won the seat of PK-61 from the platform of Kohistan Qaumi Itehad. He later announced backing the ANP that has been ruling the province and after his death Sajjadullah was elected MPA in bye-elections held on November 24, 2011.