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KARACHI: Mutta­hida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) leader Dr Farooq Sattar on Saturday filed a petition in an election tribunal challenging the results of election in the NA-245 constituency.

In the petition filed through his lawyer, Dr Sattar requested the tribunal to suspend the notification of victory of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s Aamir Liaquat Hussain, the retuned candidate from NA-245 (Karachi, East-IV), till the decision on his petition.

The MQM-P leader claimed that he had attached solid evidence with his petition about “rigging in his constituency” and alleged that about 22,000 ballet papers were missing and evidence in this regard was available in Form-46.

Dr Sattar also alleged that his “polling agents had been forced out of polling stations” before the vote counting process started and that the presiding officer had not provided Form-45 to them.

Talking to reporters, he claimed that he was among many candidates of the MQM-P whose “victory was converted into defeat through manipulation and rigging” alleging that the July 25 general elections were engineered.

He further alleged that the vote counting was carried out in the absence of polling agents with a view to changing the results.

“Why were [CCTV] cameras not functioning during the process of the vote counting?” he raised the question while demanding that if any recording after 7pm was available, it might be placed before the tribunal.

Dr Sattar recalled that Prime Minister Imran Khan had stated that he would address reservations of political parties about what they perceived as rigging in the elections. He added that he just demanded the video recording (of polling stations) from 7pm to 1am.

He said that the election record of NA-245 should have been in the custody of the returning officer, but as per returning officer the record was not in his possession. He requested the tribunal to immediately call the election record.

Published in Dawn, September 23rd, 2018