MARDAN - The main political and religious parties of Mardan district, including Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), seem to be divided in groups, as differences have been erupted among their office-bearers and workers on various issues. Sources said PTI was divided into two main groups - one group was led by former federal minister Nawabzada Khwaja Mohammad Khan Hoti while the other group was led by Atif Khan - and both the groups members did not attend meetings of the opponent group. “It will be very difficult for us to maintain our position,” said a PTI leader on condition of anonymity, adding that Khwaja Mohammad Khan Hoti was trying to make his son Umar Farooq Khan provincial general secretary of the party while Parvez Khattak was trying to gain the provincial presidentship of PTI. He added that Khwaja Mohammad Khan Hoti wanted to gain PTI tickets for national and provincial assemblies for his favorite ones so as to give tough time to ANP in the upcoming election. He said for this propose, Hoti was also trying his best to compel the ANP MPAs to join him. He said if he succeeded it would be a great danger for ANP. It is undeniable that Khawaja Mohammad Khan Hoti has a big vote bank in Mardan city but due to changing the parties he is loosing his credibility among the masses. While, the other group is supporting Asad Qaisar. 

On the other hand, the alliance of Awami National Party had got very badly damaged due to the position of the big political party of Mardan Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), because it is the ally party in the provincial government and has government in centre and it has failed to provide any relief to its workers in Mardan. That is why majority of the PPP workers are unhappy with their office-bearers and elected members.

The third big party of Mardan district Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl) is also divided into two groups - one group is led by former MNA and district Ameer Maulana Sijaul Mulk and the other group is led by MNA Maulana Mohammad Qasim. While Maulana Qasar ud Din, who is provincial media advisor of JUI-F, played a great role to make a group in the party after loosing the party previous elections.

Similarly differences in Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) have also become evident, as it has also been divided into two groups - one group is led by district president Inayat Shah Bacha advocate and well-known industrialist Shaad Ali Khan while the other group is led by Nawabzada Arsala Khan, district general secretary of the party. Former central general secretary Saranjam Khan and former district president and provincial vice president Abdus Subhan Khan along with their supporters have set themselves aside.

Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) has no considerable votes in Mardan. However, it is also divided into two groups. Some of its disgruntled activists have made a group named Dasturi group and they are also struggling to strengthen their group. Members of Dasturi group strongly criticise JI office-bearers for ‘corruption’. JI former district ameer Dr Saed Bacha has also recently dissociated from JI and joined PML-N. 

Pakistan People’s Party-Sherpaoo is also struggling to make its position strengthened in Mardan and its Chief Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao and his son Sikandar Sherpaoo have also several times visited the district and addressed huge meetings. But PPP-S has no significant votes to gain any seat in Mardan district.

It is a fact that due to the great hold of Senator Mohammad Azam Khan Hoti on ANP in Mardan district, there is no group in ANP in Mardan but several sincere and ideological workers are unhappy with the party leadership and Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti for ‘not giving them respect and importance’. It has been learnt that Chief Minister Ameer Haider Hoti will contest upcoming elections from two provincial assembly seats from his own constituency PK 23 from where he has already been elected member of provincial assembly and with this he will also contest one of the provincial assembly seat from Katlang tehsil because there is no sufficient vote bank of ANP in PK 23 and the people of PK 23 gave votes to Ameer Haider Khan Hoti due to his close contacts with the masses of PK 23 and when he became Chief Minister he lost all that contacts and majority of the people of this constituency belong to Mahmand tribe and this tribe do not give votes to ANP and hate ANP due to this reason he will also contest one of the seat from Katlang tehsil and for this purpose they have started developmental works in Katlang tehsil. Observers said that if this situation of the political parties continues in Mardan district it will provide oxygen to ANP, which has already loosing its credibility among the masses in the upcoming election.