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PTI leaders in KP claim massive poll manipulation

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PESHAWAR: Renewing allegation of rigging in the Feb 8 general elections, the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf leaders on Saturday claimed that poll documents were manipulated to reduce the margins of the poll victory of the party-supported independent candidates.

During a news conference at the Peshawar Press Club, former provincial ministers Taimur Jhagra and Kamran Khan Bangash and advocates Ali Zaman and Malik Shahab made a detailed multimedia presentation showing comparisons of official election results documents, including Forms 45, 47, and 49, to prove rigging claims.

All four PTI leaders, who were named by the party for elections and contested for different provincial assembly seats as independents, claimed electoral victory, but their rival candidates were declared successful by the relevant returning officers.

The PTI leaders said a scrutiny of the election documents uploaded by the Election Commission of Pakistan on its website revealed massive discrepancies and results manipulation.

Mr Bangash said while the partiality of the Election Commission of Pakistan was evident to all, the evidence coming out every other day proved how the mandate of the PTI was taken away by “manipulation and fabrication” of election documents.

He also said there was a lot of concern among PTI workers about the health of their leader and former prime minister, Imran Khan, and therefore, his medical examination should be carried out without delay as suggested by the doctors.

Mr Jhagra said PTI-backed candidate Meena Khan was declared MPA after she defeated Samar Haroon Bilour of the Awami National Party in the PK-83 constituency, but the ECP documents later showed a drastic reduction in the victory margin.

“Poll results compiled by the ECP show that Meena Khan secured 38,117 votes against 33,500 votes of Samar Bilour with a victory margin of 4,617 votes. However, like the nine other constituencies in Peshawar where results were changed to deprive the PTI nominees of their victory, the evidence of blatant rigging has been left unchanged in relation to PK-83 Peshawar and uploaded on the ECP website,” he said.

The PTI leader alleged that results were changed for 65 of the total 141 (46 per cent) polling stations, while in 53 polling stations, the votes of PTI nominee and the runner-up were swapped.

He added that while Form 48 showed the tabulated official results of PK-83 elections but the original Form 45 of the polling stations was kept.

“When Forms 45 on the ECP website are examined together, the margin of victory of Meena Khan increased from 4,617 votes to 43,329 votes, while the PTI’s voter share increased from 38 per cent to 59 per cent,” he said.

The PTI leaders also provided details of poll results discrepancies from nine Peshawar constituencies, including one National Assembly and eight provincial assembly ones, where the rivals of the PTI nominees were declared winners.

They alleged that in NA-28 constituency, a total of 100,000 votes were added to the tally of 38,000 votes of JUI-Fazl’s candidate Noor Alam Khan to declare him victorious.

Mr Jhagra claimed that according to the original Form 45, Arbab Jahandad of the PTI won in PK-74 by securing 44 per cent of the total votes, but his votes were reduced to 23 per cent in Form 47 before runner-up Ijaz Nahqi was declared successful.

He pointed out that results of 55 of the 100 polling stations in that constituency were changed after which in seven stations, the voter turnout was even recorded as 153 per cent, whereas it was declared over 90 per cent in 26 stations.

The PTI leaders also said Malik Tariq Awan was declared successful in PK-82 after the ECP changed election results from 57 of the total 90 polling stations.

They said that votes of Kamran Bangash, who had received 55 per cent of the polled votes, and that of Tariq Awan were swapped in the manipulated Forms 45.

The PTI leaders also said Jalal Khan, who originally got 1,600 votes only, was declared winner in PK-79 after the manipulation of results from 64 of the 66 polling stations.

They added that fake Forms 45 showed clear signs of tampering and overwriting on all those stations.

The PTI leaders said Ali Zaman and Malik Shahab Hussain got secured 43 per cent and 45 per cent of the polled votes in PK-73 and Pk-75, respectively, but their votes were reduced to 11 per cent and 30 per cent to declare their rival candidates winners.