All eyes are set on Karachi NA 249 by-polls as the National Assembly seat fell vacant after PTI’s Faisal Vawda resignation.
The voting for the by-poll in the NA-249 constituency begun at 8 am and continued till 5 pm without any interval on 276 polling stations.
A tough contest is expected among the candidates of major political parties contesting the by-election including PML-N’s Miftah Ismail, PTI’s Amjad Afridi, PPP’S Qadir Khan Mandokhel, Karachi’s former mayor Mustafa Kamal and MQM’s Hafiz Mursaleen, and 18 independent candidates.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has declared 184 polling stations highly sensitive and 92 others sensitive.
There are over 339,000 registered voters in NA-249 – 201,656 male and 137,935 female.
NA-249, Karachi West II, was created in 2018 by amalgamating areas that previously fell in two NA constituencies (NA-239 and NA-240) during three general elections held from 2002 to 2013.
The areas in the constituency include Delhi Colony, Mujahid Colony, Baldia, and Saeedabad, while the prominent ethnic groups in this working-class neighbourhood comprise Urdu-speaking people, Pashtuns, Kashmiris, and the Seraiki-speaking lot.
ECP has said that during the by-elections in Karachi today, five PTI MLAs have been ordered to be removed from NA-249.
According to the Election Commission, PTI MLAs Firdous Shamim Naqvi, Raja Azhar, Saeed Afridi, Bilal Ghaffar, and Shah Nawaz Jadoon were present in the constituency.
The Election Commission took stern notice of the presence of these members of the Assembly and the violation of election laws.
A letter was written by the Election Commission to the police officials to deport these members of the Assembly.