Deadlock over re-polling in a Karachi constituency continues

Muttahida Qaumi Movement is demanding re-polling at all polling stations of the National Assembly constituency 250.

Last Updated: May 17, 2013, 16:00 PM IST

Karachi: A deadlock between the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and the Election Commission of Pakistan continued on Friday with the party demanding re-polling at all polling stations of the National Assembly constituency 250.

However, the Election Commission said re-polling would only be held at 43 stations where voting was stopped by it following complaints of rigging and late opening of stations during the May 11 General Elections.

The Commission had held a meeting with leaders of the MQM, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf and Sindh government officials earlier in the day.

MQM leader Farooq Sattar told the media they had demanded re-polling at all polling stations of the NA-250 constituency here and not just the 43 selected polling stations.

Sattar said the remaining 142 polling stations of NA-250 experienced the same disorganisation and chaos like the 43 selected stations.

"Ballot boxes did not reach on time and in some cases, they never reached at all," he said adding it would be unfair to deny the same right to re-poll to all the voters in the constituency.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf leader Arif Alvi told the media that they wanted re-polling across Karachi not just in NA-250.

According to him, polling conducted in the city of Karachi was not free and fair and referred to video evidence of rigging aired on different television channels.

"Our stance is that, free and fair elections are key for the success of Pakistan" he said.

The NA-250 constituency has become major flash point between the MQM and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf where the latter is said to have a very good chance of displacing the MQM.