JHANG, May 4: All the five ex-MNAs who were members in the previous National Assembly and are now candidates from their respective NA constituencies, are going to make it three in a row in case of their victories.
Starting with NA-87, a constituency shared equally between Jhang and Chiniot districts, Faisal Saleh Hayat was elected MNA from here on a PPP ticket. Later, he shifted his loyalties to General Pervaiz Musharraf and formed a rebel group in the name of PPP Patriots, comprising MNAs from Peoples Party. The Patriots later merged in PML-Q and Faisal contested 2008 elections as a PML-Q nominee. He remained in the Q League throughout the term and also became a federal minister.
Just prior to the dissolution of National Assembly, he took another somersault and decided to contest the 2013 elections as an independent. If he wins again, it will be his third consecutive victory, a record he made earlier in the 90s as a PPP nominee.
Ghulam Bibi Bharwana won NA-88 in 2002 on a PML-Q ticket. She retained her seat in 2008 as a Q nominee. In spite of being very close to the Chaudhries of Gujrat she found it uncomfortable to contest a third election on a Q ticket and just before the filing of nomination papers she changed her political loyalties to become a PML-N candidate. A victory this time will make it three straight wins for her also.
Sheikh Waqas Akram contested the 2002 elections on a Millat Party ticket but finished third behind Maulana Azam Tariq and Allama Tahirul Qadri from NA-89. But after the assassination of Maulana Azam Tariq in 2003, he won the by-election as an independent but subsequently joined PML-Q. He won the 2008 elections on a Q ticket and became a blue-eyed boy of both PPP and PML-Q. Under mysterious circumstances he too found it inconvenient to carry on with the Chaudhries and just a few days before the election schedule he too found his way into the PML-N. He was disqualified first by the RO and then by an election tribunal for possessing a bogus degree. The PML-N ticket was given to his father Sheikh Muhammad Akram who was his covering candidate. Though his father is different personality, being a political continuity of Waqas Akram his victory on May 11 can be termed a hat trick by the family.
Saima Akhtar Bharwana won the previous two elections from NA-90 as an independent candidate but this time she too considered it advisable to contest on a PML-N ticket. Victory this time will be her third in a row.
NA-91 is the last constituency of the district. Sahibzada Mehboob Sultan won from here in 2002 on a PML-Q ticket, a feat he repeated in 2008 on the same party’s ticket. Ironically, he too has been sane enough to go for a PML-N ticket this time round, despite being very close to former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gillani and having drawn massive funds by using his good offices which included the construction of a much-needed bridge on river Chenab in his constituency. He too will make it three in a row if he wins.
There are some candidates who have already made hat tricks in the district in past. Faisal Saleh Hayat made did it by winning the 1988, 1990 and 1993 elections in a row on PPP tickets. Sahibzada Nazir Sultan also recorded a hat trick during the same three elections and on the same party ticket.
Syeda Abida Hussain although did not win three consecutive different elections but she won in 1985 as an independent and during the 1988 election she won from two different constituencies, again as an independent.
The political history of the district also shows a hat trick of defeats, recorded by Sahibzada Nazir Sultan, who lost 1997, 2002 and 2008 elections consecutively. He is again a candidate from NA-90 for the 2013 elections and if he is defeated this time he will achieve the unique distinction of making it four in a row.