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Senators voice concerns over alleged rigging in Feb 8 polls

Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of Jamat-e-Islami demands resignation of Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja.



Senators voice concerns over alleged rigging in Feb 8 polls
GNN Media: Representational Photo

Islamabad: The Senators from the opposition benches voiced concerns over alleged irregularities during the nationwide general elections held on February 8.

Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of Jamaat-i-Islami urged the chief election commissioner to resign, citing potential treason under Article 6 due to what he deemed a fraudulent election. He underscored the necessity for a judicial inquiry into the rigging allegations, lambasting the Election Commission of Pakistan for its failure to ensure transparency and suggesting national apologies were warranted.

Senator Mushtaq highlighted instances of suspected rigging, notably where a PTI-supported candidate secured victory in a constituency where the JI Karachi Ameer had contested, suggesting misconduct.

Barrister Ali Zafar of PTI alleged unfair targeting of one party during the pre-poll period, asserting that attempts to manipulate election outcomes post-voting constituted a theft of the people's mandate and undermined democratic principles.

Senator Waleed Iqbal noted international media scrutiny of Pakistan's election process, citing the removal of the electoral symbol of the leading political party just before polling. He criticized returning officers for allegedly disregarding constitutional protocols in announcing election results.

However, PML-N Senator Irfan Siddiqui invited PTI to engage in parliamentary opposition, stressing its pivotal role and advising it to govern effectively in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa before returning to the central arena.