PTI Vice President Shah Mehmood Qureshi. — File Photo

KARACHI: The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s vice-chairman, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, has said he has filed nomination forms for the May 11 general elections from two constituencies of Tharparkar district, NA 228 and NA 230, as an independent candidate.

Addressing a press conference at the Raja House here along with PML-F chief Pir Pagara, Mr Qureshi expressed gratitude to the latter for inviting him to contest elections from Sindh.

He warned against extending the polling date, saying that any change in the election schedule would open a Pandora’s Box. The Supreme Court had already made it clear that it would not allow any extra-constitutional step.

He said the PPP-led governments at the centre and in Sindh over the past five years had put the country in a precarious situation where it was facing serious challenges of circular debt, institutional deterioration, poverty, ethnicity, terrorism and law and order. He said that stories of corruption and ‘existence of a chief minister in every district’ was a manifestation of the incompetence of the rulers.

“In view of the challenges, we have decided to unite all patriotic forces that believe in the federation, whose strength is declining, to find a way to steer the country on the way forward.”

He said the elections would decide whether people wanted to hand over the country to those who had bartered away national interest.

He said there was no solution except elections because a stable and strong federation was not possible without democracy. The elections should be held on time and in accordance with the constitution which decreed that the caretaker government’s sole agenda was to create an atmosphere in which free, fair and transparent elections could be held.

Mr Qureshi said the dream of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf was a new, strong and prosperous Pakistan.

He said the coming period, when forces of 38 countries led by Nato would be pulling out of Afghanistan, would test the Pakistani leaders’ abilities.

Answering a question, Mr Qureshi alleged that President Asif Ali Zardari and the PPP had prepared a strategy to give minimum time for electioneering.

He said the death anniversary of PPP’s founder chairman Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had always been commemorated in a big way even when the late Benazir Bhutto was in exile but the last government had limited the event to Garhi Khuda Bakhsh which was a matter to ponder for the ideological party workers.

Pir Pagara thanked Mr Qureshi for accepting his invitation to contest the elections from Sindh and said it would fulfill the desire of his late father who had been keen to see the followers of the Ghausia and Hur Jamaats come together. He said his party would ensure Mr Qureshi’s victory.

The PML-F chief expressed confidence that Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim, leader of another PML faction, would support the alliance.

Pir Pagara alleged that the PPP was still ruling in Sindh. He said the Punjab chief secretary had been changed but similar transfer orders in Sindh had not been implemented.

He said the time given for scrutiny of the nomination papers was not sufficient to screen out defaulters of the agriculture bank in Punjab and Sindh. The returning officers ought to concentrate on recovering public money instead of asking irrelevant questions from candidates, he said.

Talking to Dawn, Mr Qureshi said he had permission from PTI chief Imran Khan for all his decisions. He said his move to contest the elections as an independent candidate was a “technical issue”.

An official of the Election Commission of Pakistan said there was no bar on a person contesting election from one constituency as an independent candidate and from another as a candidate of some party.

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Comments (26)

muzammil ullah khan
April 8, 2013 8:21 am
He should have added that while rejecting their sardars and elders the tribesmen should accept the Taliban commanders as their true leaders . Mullahs will never learn or lets say they will do anything to create chaos in the name of Islam .
Zamir Alam
April 8, 2013 11:44 am
Dr. Rasool. Do you live in Alice in Wonderland? He came on official visit to USA . while in office writing a book, doing book dealings during official trip and on govt. expenses. He did not mentioned his source of income nor if paid taxes. His farm house is illegal under rules so his Amin Fahim and others. He suspend the judiciary . not a single judge.. you comments include all the judges. do you know.. think before you ink.. His declared assests 69.5 crores. what justifcation a head of state have to accumulate such vast assets ? He is not corrupt? what is he?
Anwar Qureshi
April 8, 2013 8:03 am
Tsunami has occurred within PTI itself; Imran Khan is not an experienced politician, lacks maturity... PTI will be votes spoiler and have deployed non-electable candidates in the upcoming elections (which I believe should be postponed for sometime to hold full accountability of the corrupt politicians which is a must). CEC and Caretaker PM should issue an ordinance scrapping down the excessive perks and privileges of the Parliamentarians and banning doling out Development Funds. These funds should only be allocated to Local Governments and such a system should be permanent like Senate and non-abolishable and should function independently and without the supervision of the provincial governments or their intervention.
akhter husain
April 8, 2013 7:13 am
Alas we have hundreds of politicians but not one Statesman in our back-yard.We are still in process of growing.,Maturing and producing statesman will take its own time.Be patient.
April 8, 2013 8:09 am
He can run the country better than Zardaris, Bhuttos, Sharifs, Shahbazs, Khans, Mullahs and Chowdarys. At least he has an agenda, a policy, plan, skillful people and most importantly loyalty unlike PML-N, PPP, ANP blah blah.
April 8, 2013 11:56 am
Fake degrees produce the fake leaders..... An education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire and for those leaders who are educated but cannot bring in the change iare as useless as uneducated ones. Let us use the education to replace an empty mind with an open one.
April 8, 2013 6:33 am
For some reason all parties talk about not accepting turncoats but end up taking the turncoats on high positions. It is sad and shows lack of democractic experience on the part of electorate. If I can have it my way, no person who ever changes his or her party will find a party ticket. Culture of powerful electables should go.
April 8, 2013 11:59 am
IK not experienced politician because he does not belong to the club who are busy with their own non Pakistani agenda. Other than IK, no one else has any agenda, credentials or recent performance to prove their worth for the state. All others are very experienced in lying and robbing the nation
Shair Khan
April 7, 2013 8:50 am
Some thing is very rotten here. If Imran Khan and his party cannot keep their work for more then 24 Hrs. How do you expect them to keep their words post election. Also why are they still sorting out who should get the seat. This election should is not a surprise. There is complete disarray within the party. It shows complete lack of leadership. If Imran Khan cannot run his party do I believe him to run Pakistan. I was wit PTIbut not any more.
April 8, 2013 1:45 pm
We are not interested to cast our vote to Pakistan, Pakistan just want my vote to get foreign exchange, when Pakistan does not consider me a true Pakistani because of my duel nationality. Pakistan does not need to legislate for our vote. Those interested to cast vote can visit Pakistan and vote. I return this loly pup To ECP and Supreme Court of Pakistan. Beside disrespect of my duel nationality still I will send foreign exchange as CJ needs my foreign exchange and not vote.
Raymond Durrani
April 8, 2013 1:50 pm
This PPP government did create so called "Ministry for Overseas Pakistanis" but forgot to consider the needs of overseas Pakistanis, how ridiculous it could get on part of the PPP government of 5 years which they boast about all the time everywhere. Can someone in Pakistan figure that out in Pakistan and petition the president and the Prime Minister for misleading the overseas Pakistanis and for appointing their friends and party supporters in all those high positions within Pakistan and abroad?
April 8, 2013 8:50 am
A guy who is true patriot and a statesman came by himself to face the music, i wish if he sincere with Pakistan and pakistani people ( muslims ) may ALLAH give him success.
April 8, 2013 8:52 am
Mr. Iftikhar Chudry please wake-up as Mr. Zardari is no more president of Pak. is his imminesty suspended or you are awating for his safe departure to Dubai??
Arif A.Khan
April 8, 2013 9:19 am
The above suggestion by ECP enables oversees Pakistanis to cast their votes in the coming general election as per SC directive or deprives them to cast their votes in coming general Election?
April 8, 2013 9:55 am
If somebody says but can't prove it that he/she is a degree holder how can somebody like that qualify the oft talked articles 62 and 63 once the lie is exposed
Dr Rasool Ali (Idaho USA)
April 8, 2013 5:25 am
Musharraf is not corrupt, and is a 100% right person for running the election. These RO are attention seekers! Is Nawas or Shabaz PML N and PPP people are better and not corrupt! Are you kidding me!! Love you Musharraf, We now Sir you have taken so many shots at your life from wars to lunatics like taliban to many more like Pakistani insane mentality of uneducated people don't see that and now this non-sense. They cant see the truth at what happen and Lal masjid, Benazir and Bughti False CASES are implanted with corrupt Chief Justice. Love you may Allah give you success and health!
Zamir Alam
April 8, 2013 11:25 am
Mr. Azad . dear did you finish high school. Zardari is President .. and will remain so until 6 more months. CJ is not taking a nap. He will face the music just like Taiwan President . Be patient!
April 8, 2013 5:13 am
We'll see...this is all SHAM. EC does not have the guts to take out the big guns.
April 8, 2013 10:57 am
DR. I pity your ignorance. I been in army when Mosh was chief and trust me i know he was the worst choice to be chief.
April 7, 2013 12:13 pm
The reason is simple not technical or tactical. Mr. Qureshi is risk aversive and wants to ensure his victory from at least one constituency. If PTI's VC isn't sure of his victory from his own Multan constituency what will happen to other PTI's candidates? Zara sochiye!!!
Jamshed Khan
April 7, 2013 5:32 am
This is what Mr Qureshi was saying until yesterday (according to Dawn): ""Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Saturday rubbished speculation regarding alleged plans of contesting elections in Sindh as an independent candidate. “This is nonsense,” the PTI leader told over telephone. “I am an elected vice chairman from PTI, and I would never contest elections independently.”" And now he has filed papers as an independent candidate. A convincing liar and indeed a great vice chair of PTI. Well done PTI for electing him into the party. This shows one thing very clearly that neither IK is a proper politician, nor are people around him. I hope if PTI supporters have a shred of common sense they will not vote for Mr Qureshi, because If he can deceive the party before elections, just imagine what would he do after winning his seat. An independent candidate is generally a proper lota who swings in the direction of wind.
Nazir K Ali
April 7, 2013 6:48 am
It seems PTI knows how to take decisions. We have had enough of these 'flip flop' politicians. Salams
April 7, 2013 6:49 am
17 hours ago, Mr. Qureshi said he would never file papers as an independent candidate. And now he files as independent candidate from two constituencies? What kind of dirty politics is it? And we say PTI will bring Tsunami? Mr. Imran Khan, look inside your party .. Tsunami has already started there ... the Tsunami of lottas that you have on your party!
April 8, 2013 8:35 am
this media coverage of RO's grilling politicians is a good thing. They have ruled the roost far too easily for far too long. the public grilling will also put some faith back into the system. Transparency is key. Other than the religious questioning, I feel the RO's are doing a good job for the nation. We need to make sure we have the right caliber of leaders for tomorrow.
April 7, 2013 11:10 am
If that really is the case, I think it's a tactical move on PTI's part .. how else would one try to neutralize Zardari?
April 8, 2013 4:06 pm
If Courts and Police of a country are Corrupt. That country can not progress. This is the bed luck with pakistan. Judges and Police is the most corrupted profession in Pakistan which cause 80% people corrupt including politicians.
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