KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement convener Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, alleging pre-poll rigging and rejecting the election results of the urban areas of Sindh, has demanded resignation of the chief election commissioner.

Speaking at the temporary headquarters of the MQM-Pakistan at Bahadurabad on Thursday, he said that rigging was carried out after the polling concluded and now the ballot boxes were being stuffed.

He said that he was informing the countrymen about the pre-poll rigging that was carried out systematically. He said that first a smaller population [of the city] was shown in the census and then under the garb of delimitation the constituencies were redesigned in such a way that the “Haq-parasts”, or MQM supporters, faced difficulties in the elections.

He said that after the polling concluded on Wednesday at 6pm, the MQM polling agents were forced out and not allowed to witness the vote counting. They were not even given the results on the prescribed Form 45, he added.

He said: “Our mandate has been desecrated and we understand that we were being discriminated against, so we would soon announce our strategy and future line of action.”

On the occasion he also praised the people of Sindh’s urban areas who despite facing hardships over the past five years came out in large numbers and took part in the elections and voted for the MQM candidates.

He also severely criticised the chief election commissioner “who has tarnished the entire election process”, asking him to tender his resignation immediately.

Muttahida congratulates Imran

On the occasion, he congratulated Imran Khan and said that the MQM respected the mandate given by the people to Mr Khan and that at the same time Mr Khan should also take notice of this “election rigging” and that he should also respect the mandate given to the MQM.

He said that the people of the urban areas of Sindh had voted for the MQM candidates but the results had been changed and “we will not accept these changed results” and soon “we will announce our future line of action”.

He said that even as he spoke results of many Karachi constituencies had not been announced. He said the MQM-P polling agents were forced out after the polling stopped and they were not made part of the vote counting, owing to which the elections could not be called transparent, as the results of Sindh’s urban areas had been changed. Therefore, the MQM rejected the election results.

He said that on the basis of similar reasons many other major political parties had also rejected the election results.

Deputy convener of the party Kanwar Naveed Jameel, Rabita Committee member Faisal Subzwari, Dr Farooq Sattar, Kishwar Zehra, Zahid Mansoori and others were also present.

Published in Dawn, July 27th, 2018