Jammu and Kashmir
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Punjab is the Pakistan`s second largest province and the most populous province. Many villagers in Punjab cast their ballot to display their feudal adherence rather than to convey a political opinion. Of the 272 National Assembly seats, 148 are in Punjab province; hence Punjab can be described as power-centre of Pakistan. Punjab is inhabited by large middle-class conscious of what each political party has to offer. The province has been ruled mostly by Sharif brothers. And here, the vote of feudal landowners matters significantly. The key issues in Punjab are:
Up to 20 hours of load-shedding a day is being reported across the province. The power crisis has not only made the lives of people of Punjab miserable but also crippled industries across the province.
Pakistan has witnessed a number of attacks linked to various Punjab-based Islamic militant groups. Jaish-e-Mohammad, Lashkar-e-Toiba, Sipah-i-Sabha Pakistan and Sunni Muslim Lashkar-e-Jhangvi are some of the Pakistan-based groups, which have wreaked havoc inside and outside Pakistan. It is to be noted that the province has 2,911 sensitive and 2,617 most sensitive polling stations, according to the Election Commission of Pakistan.
Violence against minorities:
Campaigns of threats and violence against Christians, Hindus, Ahmadis and other minority groups are prevalent in Punjab province. There have been demands for reviewing or repealing Pakistan`s controversial blasphemy law, which affects minorities. Pakistan’s “Blasphemy Law” makes the death penalty effectively mandatory for blasphemy. Christians could prove to be a key swing vote in central Punjab. The party favouring as well as displaying religious pluralism have fair chances of grabbing a good vote bank in this province.
Punjab has the most fertile lands, but inflation is staggering. Flour, wheat, oil and sugar prices are spiralling, making inflation a key issue ahead of the upcoming polls.
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