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PESHAWAR: The two main component parties of Mutahidda Majlis-i-Amal -- Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl and Jamaat-i-Islami -- have developed serious differences in Khyber tribal district over violation of a decision that none of their candidates would use the name of the alliance during their campaign in the erstwhile Fata.

Addressing a news conference at Peshawar Press Club on Monday, JUI-F candidate for NA-44 in Khyber tribal district Shamsuddin Afridi said that JI candidate Shah Faisal Afridi was using the name of MMA in his campaign.

He said that the component parties of MMA had no alliance in the tribal districts and all of them had fielded candidates. He said that both JUI-F and JI were not contesting election on the symbol of book.

The JUI-F candidate demanded of Election Commission of Pakistan to take notice of pre-poll rigging in the constituency and ensure free and fair elections. He alleged that his rival candidates were buying votes, which was violation of the code of conduct of ECP.

Shamsuddin Afridi asks ECP to take notice of pre-poll rigging

Shamsuddin Afridi alleged that the candidates were paying Rs40,000 to Rs50,000 in Khyber to voters. In the prevailing situation free, fair and impartial elections were impossible, he added.

He alleged that the local education officers were campaigning for their favourite candidates. He urged ECP, district returning officer and returning officers to take action against such candidates to ensure fair polls.

He also showed concerns over changes in electoral rolls and called it pre-poll rigging. He called upon ECP and law enforcement agencies to take pragmatic measures to avoid law and order situation in the tribal district. He said that responsibility of any untoward incident would rest with the relevant authorities.

Meanwhile, addressing another press conference, MMA provincial vice president Allama Hameed Hussain Imami expressed concerns over law and order situation in the province.

He expressed shock over the death of candidates Haroon Bilour, Ikramullah Gandapur and Siraj Raisani in incidents of terrorism and attempts on life of Akram Khan Durrani. He said that fair and free elections would not be possible if government failed to provide foolproof security to the voters and candidates.

He said that only MMA had the capability to resolve the issues faced by people. He said that MMA wanted ECP to play its role effectively and ensure impartial and transparent election in the country.

Published in Dawn, July 24th, 2018