AHMEDPUR EAST-Thousands of citizens staged a sit-in and blocked National Highway at Chowk Abbasia as a mark of protest against alleged change of the election victory of independent candidate Prince Bahawal Abbas Khan Abbasi.

They chanted slogans against the Returning Officer of NA-174. The result of NA-174 was announced at 11am by Returning Officer Bilal Beg, who declared PTI candidate Samiul Hassan Gillani as winner by a margin of approximately six thousands votes. On hearing the announcement, hundreds of people marched on Dera Nawab Sahib Road, staged a sit-in and blocked the National Highway. It remained closed for six hours.

Similarly, all the markets and shopping centres were closed to express solidarity with Prince Bahawal Abbasi. The citizens alleged that the staff of Returning Officer NA-174 was allegedly found stamping on ballot papers for NA-174 in a mosque near Returning Officer's office. The photos and videos of the illegal practice were shared on the social media and handed over to local journalists as well.

It was also alleged that majority of the presiding officers did not issue the election result on Form 45 to the polling agents of Prince Bahawal Abbasi and the election results were delayed intentionally, they said. Meanwhile, hundreds of people staged a demonstration in front of RO Office but heavy contingent of police resorted to baton charge and teargas so as to disperse the mob.

Another report says that PPP candidate for NA-174 Makhdoom Syed Ali Hassan Gillani drove to Sadiq Garh Palace where he expressed his solidarity with Prince Bahawal Abbasi. Both Prince Bahawal Abbasi and Makhdoom Ali Gillani along with Sahibada Muhammad Umer Abbasi went to Chowk Abbasia where they urged the masses to restore the traffic but they refused.