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Tribunal disqualifies MNA, orders re-election on NA-46

Updated March 25, 2014

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MNA Nasir Khan Afridi
MNA Nasir Khan Afridi

PESHAWAR: An election tribunal on Tuesday declared null and void the election of MNA Nasir Khan Afridi on the NA-46 seat (Tribal Area IX) of the National Assembly, and ordered a re-election in the constituency.

The tribunal’s decision was in response to a petition filed by Senator Hamidullah Jan Afridi and another candidate who had contended for the seat, Iqbal Afridi, from Pakistan the Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI).

The petitioners had alleged rigging in NA-46 and had claimed that Nasir Khan's success was engineered.

Riaz Ahmed Khattak, deputy registrar of the tribunal, confirmed to Dawn.com the MNA’s disqualification. He added that the tribunal had requested the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to make arrangements for a re-election in the constituency.

The NA-46 constituency is situated in the Khyber tribal region in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).

Last year during the general elections, the voting process in the region had not gone down smoothly on account of several incidents of violence, including ransacking of polling stations. As a result, re-polling was held on 21 polling stations for the seat on June 5, 2013 and Nasir Khan was declared winner.

At the time, PTI candidate Iqbal Afridi had accused the local administration of playing the main role in ensuring Nasir Khan’s success “by polling fake votes”.

Iqbal Afridi had also claimed that the election was fully engineered and nobody could call it free, fair and transparent.