SWABI, May 12: The Awami Jamhoori Ittehad Pakistan (AJIP), a party founded by leading entrepreneur family of Liaquat Khan Tarakai, has emerged as the largest party in Swabi district by clinching one National Assembly seat and three provincial assembly seats in general elections held on Saturday.
The Awami National Party (ANP) was handed its first-ever crushing defeat in the district, which remained its stronghold since inception of country.
In 2008 election, the ANP candidates had won from several constituencies of Swabi district, including NA-13, PK-31, PK-33, PK-35, and PK- 36, while an MNA and two MPAs of the district had returned on the women reserved seats.
However, the ANP leaders failed to retain any of these seats and following their defeat all of them had kept their cell phones off.
It was in 2005 when the Liaqat Tarakai’s family plunged into politics his son Shahram Khan defeated ANP candidate Amanullah for the slot of district nazim.
The AJIP candidates contested elections from all the eight constituencies in the district. Among them Usman Khan Tarakai – Mr Shahram’s uncle who had defeated the ANP’s president Asfandyar Wali Khan in 2008 elections –retained his seat while defeating the ANP candidate Rehmanullah.
Mohammad Ali Tarakai, another uncle of Shahram, won from PK-33, defeating ANP’s Mohammad Ishfaq. He grabbed 13,182 votes against Mr Ishfaq’s 10,611 votes. Mr Shahram grabbed PK-32, by defeating former MPA, Ameer Rehman, son of Rehmanullah. He obtained 19,764 votes against Mr Rehman’s 16,529.
Babar Khan, son of Swabi Qaumi Mahaz founder late Mohammad Salim, won from PK-31.
He defeated ANP’s Gul Zamin Shah by grabbing 16,380 votes to his 8,529. Before the election, he had entered into an alliance with the AJIP and declared that he was contesting election from its platform.
Pakistan Terik-i-Insaf emerged as the second largest party of the district. Asad Qaisar, PTI provincial president, won from both NA-13 and PK-35. In NA-13, he defeated JUI-F candidate Attaul Haq Darvaish, while in PK-35, he received 14,118 votes against 12,334 of his rival Sajjad Khan of PML-N.
For the first time, the Qaumi Watan Party and PML-N also won one seat each from Swabi district’s provincial constituencies. Abdul Karim Khan, son of former provincial minister late Abdur Raziq Khan, won from PK-34 by defeating ANP’s Amjid Khan. He received 13,365 votes against Mr Amjid’s 10,150.
PML-N candidate Shiraz Khan won from PK-36 against PTI’s Rangaiz Khan of the PTI. Since 1988 it was the second occasion that a candidate from the plain areas of Topi tehsil won from this constituency. Mr Shiraz received 12,923 votes and Mr Rangaiz 12,734.
Mr Shahram, the victorious AJIP chairman, declared: “Gone are the days when the district was stronghold of the ‘Red Shirt’ leaders.
We had given a humiliating defeat to its leaders in 2008 and in the Saturday’s election they met with their fate once again. We would also defeat them with the support of people.”