QUETTA: Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP) president Nawabzada Shahzain Bugti, who is a grandson of the late Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, on Sunday won the NA-259 seat in re-polling.

According to official results, Shahzain Bugti obtained 20,895 votes in 29 polling stations, while Mian Khan Bugti got 2,954 votes and Mir Tariq Mehmood Khetiran received only 198 votes.

In the 2018 general elections, Shahzain Bugti was elected to the National Assembly on a ticket of his own faction of the JWP. He had obtained 22,787 votes, while Mir Tariq Mehmood Khetiran received 21,213 votes.

After taking the oath, Shahzain Bugti supported Imran Khan in his election as prime minister.

Mr Khetiran, a close relative of Nawab Akbar Bugti, had challenged Shahzain Bugti’s election, levelling allegation of rigging. He requested the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to declare Shahzain Bugti’s election null and void. The ECP accepted his petition and ordered re-polling in 29 polling stations.

The decision was challenged before the Supreme Court, which had upheld the ECP order of re-polling.

The re-polling was held amid tight security from 8am to 5pm without break. The Balochistan Election Commission had established 115 polling booths. As many as 31 candidates took part in the re-polling.

The number of registered voters in 29 polling stations was 47,269, including 27,899 women and 19,370 men.

The local administration had declared 18 polling stations very sensitive. No ­untoward incident was reported.

Published in Dawn, November 18th, 2019