PTI calls for nationwide protests against alleged vote rigging on March 2

Party fields Amir Dogar for NA speaker, Junaid for deputy speaker slots

ISLAMABAD  -  Pakistan Tehreek-e- Insaf (PTI) on Tuesday gave a countrywide protest call on March 2 against the alleged mandate theft, urging all democratic forces to join its peaceful demonstrations in a move to take “the stolen seats” back.

PTI also nominated party loyalist Amir Dogar for the position of National Assembly speaker and Junaid Khan for the slot of deputy speaker. 

Addressing a press conference here along with Balochistan and central party leadership, PTI leader Sher Afzal Marwat said the party would stage peaceful protests across the country on Saturday against the large-scale polls heist in the February 8 elections.

This is being done as directed by their incarcerated party founder Imran Khan, he added.

Marwat said that Khan during a meeting gave him the responsibility to lead the PTI’s protest in Islamabad on Saturday between 11 and 12 noon. 

Speaking about the alleged polls robbery in Balochistan, the PTI leader said that the issue of election rigging in the province was presented before the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) but of no good. On the other hand, the electoral watchdog is too quick to decide the cases against PTI and the party candidates’ victory was being converted into defeat in recount, he added. Ali Muhmmad Khan, talking on his turn, said that PTI was not against any party or institution but it wanted the public mandate to be respected. PTI leader Zain Qureshi stated: “We stand with our Balochistan brothers because this war is neither for any individual nor for the PTI rather this battle is for the mandate of the people of Pakistan.” PTI candidate from Balochistan Salar Khan Kakar said that large scale election rigging was carried out in the province, as seats were allegedly sold among the contractors, smugglers and apolitical figures. Kakar claimed that he secured clear victory as per Form-45 but a PML-N candidate who was at eighth position in the race was declared triumphant fraudulently. The officials denied my entry into the returning officers’ office, he added. PTI’s candidate for PB-41 (Quetta) Ghafar Kakar said that he was present at the RO’s office to receive Form-47 but he was kicked out by the security officials to manipulate the results and declared the runner-up as victorious fraudulently. PTI’s candidate for PB-39 (Quetta) Haji Noor Khan Khalji said that people of Quetta, like the rest of Pakistan, came out in huge numbers and voted for Imran Khan. “We were contacted at night and were asked that if we would stay with Khan, they would not let us win,” he claimed. PTI’s candidate for NA- 253 (Ziarat) Saddam Tarin stated that he had all Form-45, which clearly showed his victory in the constituency. Meanwhile, PTI leader Omer Ayub announced that party founder Imran Khan had nominated Amir Dogar and Junaid Khan for the positions of speaker and deputy speaker National Assembly respectively. Dogar won the February 8 polls from Multan and serves as PTI chief whip in the NA. He also worked in the same position during the last PTI government. He also served as the special assistant to the prime minister on political affairs during that period. Junaid is an elected MNA of PTI from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Malakand district.

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