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Former PM Gilani loses on home ground


News Desk |

NA-158, one of Multan’s six national assembly seats, native Yousuf Raza Gillani and former Prime Minister of Pakistan faced an unexpected defeat despite leading in initial results on Wednesday night.

Hafiz Saeed is already internationally embroiled in the September 2007 Mumbai terrorist attacks and his claim to the native seat was rejected by Pakistani voters.

Pakistan’s 2018 elections have been historic in many ways. Highest voter turnaround and strictest surveillance ever combined together to seal the fate of many incumbents and open doors for much-awaited underdogs.

As results kept trickling in, former PM Yousuf Raza Gilani lost to PTI’s Mohammad Ibrahim in Multan’s Shujabad constituency.

Read more: Musharraf rejects poll rigging in G.E 2018

Earlier in 2002 the former PM’s nephew Asad Murtaza Gilani won the seat and held the seat for another two elections. However, in 2015, Murtaza lost his life, in a stampede during Hajj pilgrimage, after which his uncle took up the fight for his seat.

Some local media and political observers predicted that Gilani would capitalize on sympathy votes for his nephew’s demise. However, a lot of time may have passed since then and PTI’s politics held more appeal for a change in the NA-158 constituency. As Imran Khan’s PTI scored one seat after the other in Multan district Shujabad was no exception.

For voters, the right wing conservative alternative and Jamaat-ud Dawa (JuD) leader Hafiz Saeed didn’t hold much appeal either. Hafiz Saeed is already internationally embroiled in the September 2007 Mumbai terrorist attacks and his claim to the native seat was rejected by Pakistani voters.

Read more: Shocking Defeats in General Election Results 2018

There was an initial scare of PTI allying with right-wing elements to consolidate its position in a hung parliament. But apparently, with a clean sweep majority in Multan as well as the National Assembly, the party and its voters felt no need to associate with extremist political factions.

In the 2013 elections, there were total 323568 registered in NA 158 Multan, 205058 votes were polled out. This year’s unofficial result from 56% of polling stations shows Muhammad Ibrahim Khan of PTI leading with 83304 votes, trailed by Gilani of PPPP with 74443 votes.

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