KARACHI: While the pace of announcing polling station-wise results in Karachi was slower than other parts of the country, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan on Thursday night claimed to have won 17 to 18 National Assembly seats in Karachi, Hyderabad and Mirpurkhas.
However, rival parties — the Jamaat-i-Islami and PPP — contested the MQM-P claim.
On the other hand, the provincial election commission had not realeased any Form-47 (provisional result) of any constituency in Karachi or other parts of Sindh till 4am on Friday.
At a late-night press conference here, MQM-P convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said: “According to the result we have received so far, the MQM-Pakistan has secured a clear victory on 17-18 NA seats, whereas results on remaining seats are awaited.”
Election commission officials, PPP and JI contest Muttahida’s claim
Dr Siddiqui said that not only Urdu-speaking localities but areas like Keamari and Sohrab Goth had also voted in favour of his party.
He said the MQM-P had once again secured the mandate of urban Sindh which was snatched from it in the 2018 general election.
Senior MQM-P leader Mustafa Kamal expressed his gratitude to the people of Karachi, Hyderabad and Mirpurkhas for reposing faith in his party again.
However, PPP leader and Karachi Mayor Barrister Murtaza Wahab said that his party was leading on 12 NA seats in the metropolis.
He also expressed concern over delay in announcing provisional results.
JI-Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman told a private news channel that the MQM-P was making “false” claim.
He claimed that only his party and the PTI were leading on the national and provincial assembly seats from Karachi.
The JI leader warned against attempting to impose what he called “rejected people” through state machinery.
Sources in the office of the provincial election commission admitted that the process to electronically send/receive Form 45 was very slow in the evening and it “almost stopped” at around 1:30am.
Before that, they said, the PPP was leading on three NA seats in Karachi’s Malir district.
Rival parties of the MQM-P accused it of carrying out widespread rigging across the metropolis.
Citing one example, they said that MQM convener Dr Siddiqui was contesting the election from NA-248 in its ‘so-called stronghold’ in district Central, but at several polling stations he lost the poll badly.
Sources in the office of the election commission said the commission had not yet received complete sets of Form 45 from any of the 22 Karachi NA seats. However, the sources added, the MQM-P was leading on seven-eight NA seats in Karachi according to incomplete results.
The MQM-P had contested elections on 19 of Karachi’s 22 NA seats and two of three NA constituencies in Hyderabad. In the 2018 election, the PTI had secured 14 of 21 NA seats in Karachi and the MQM-P had grabbed only four NA seats.
Published in Dawn, February 9th, 2024