Twitter was lit with on Friday as images of Pakistan Peoples Party leader Sharjeel Memon’s face plastered on brand-new Toyota Corollas made their way around.
It started with a tweet from Momina Basit, who leads PTI’s Hazara women’s wing, on Wednesday — alleging that 250 new Corollas being used for Mr Memon’s election campaign had been bought with Sindh’s health and education budgets.
@MominaBasit1: “250 new Corolla for election campaign. This is where the budget of health , education and others spent in Sindh. Sources. #SharjeelMemon #PPP.”
On Facebook, Osama Bin Ghazi, a friend of the former MPA, wrote a post explaining what had happened. “Really sad to see fake news in media about Sharjeel bhai, the number which hysteria-creating media airs that the cars are more than 200 has no veracity but based on utter lie,” he said.
He added that a total of 13 cars which belonged to PPP activists who lived in Mr Memon’s constituency (PS-63) had painted their leader’s portraits on the vehicles as a sign of respect and affection.
“They have done so owing to the visible development in the constituency,” he explained.
However, there were rumours that Mr Memon had 19 cars prepared in Hyderbad — each bearing a photo of him or other PPP leaders such as Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and his father.
Twitter users such as @aliahmedlagha also tweeted in support of Mr Memon and claimed: “If #PPP voters and supporters paint their cars it it ILLEGAL & when PTI Leaders are painting on big vehicles to election campaign its LEGAL.”
@MianFarhanUllah, and several other accounts, however, said believe that there were more cars. “What I have heard is that 500 more new corolla are coming along with 200 civics and 100 Fortuners and these are just for #SharjeelMemon #PPP”
Also trending on social media was an independent candidate from Karachi (NA-243) — Ayaz Memon Motiwala, who spent a few hours sitting in sewage water and asking for votes.
Photographs of the independent candidate wearing a shalwar kameez and sitting in a pool of water having tea and taking a nap went viral, with people calling him a “Star Plus drama” on Facebook.
The candidate’s Twitter page — which has a photo of him sitting in a pile of trash — shows that he is actively trying to participate in the upcoming elections by getting a reaction.
Published in Dawn, June 30th, 2018