NA-120
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Yasser Awan |

PTI (Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf ) has lost NA-120 election, as predicted by many political analysts. The constituency has long been a power center of PML-N (Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz), so this was difficult for the pollsters to go against the tide and predict a PTI win. There are many lessons that PTI and Imran Khan will have to learn from the loss in NA-120.

In a recent interview with a private TV channel, Imran Khan said that he and his party have learned many lessons from 2013 general elections. He added that PTI is well prepared for 2018 elections and it will nominate best candidates. He added that he must accept that during 2013 elections, PTI’s choice of candidates was not good.

A sad reality

More than PTI and Imran Khan, it’s the survival of Pakistan that is dependent on the voice of the people heard through un-rigged fair elections from now onwards

Almost all the elections in Pakistan have been rigged one way or the other. In a country like Pakistan, it’s quite impossible to eliminate pre-poll rigging completely. Money and power will always remain important. But this strength of money and power to influence the elections can be marginalized if election day rigging is completely washed out of the system.

Read more: Solo flight: PTI going to court against PML-N’s “illegal Act”

Just a few days back (on September 22, 2017),  Secretary Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has announced that after conducting a pilot project of the biometric election in 39 polling stations in NA-120, the experience showed that ECP won’t be able to conduct general elections in 2018 biometrically.

During American elections, Bernie Sanders said that “system is rigged against the poor”; still the American system had so much power to count the polled votes correctly and to elect Trump, smashing all the pollsters on the way. Same is true about Pakistan; the system is rigged. And it is rigged against the less powerful and poor candidate Pakistan.

Only true public representative political parties must be allowed to rule the country. Both Nawaz Sharif and the establishment know that elections were rigged in 2013 to make NS prime minister

PTI and Imran Khan have tried a better candidate in NA-120. What else better candidates Imran Khan is talking about bringing in general elections in 2018? PTI’s candidate in NA-120 wasn’t perfect? She was. Being a doctor, a grandmother, soft-spoken, enlightened and a woman; what other qualities a ‘better’ candidate should have? So the theory of Imran Khan winning the elections with better candidates in 2018 seems impractical.

Read more: Down & dirty: Battle between PML-N & PTI for 2018 elections

What should be done?

It has been reported that on all the polling stations with the 39 bio-metric machines in NA-120, PTI has won. This is time for Imran Khan to take the case into Supreme Court of Pakistan. Imran Khan must understand that people were with Trump and only the fair elections decided that Americans were with Trump.

Americans went out and voted against all the polling industry and the mainstream media which was uttering day and night that Hillary Clinton will win the elections. If elections were systematically rigged for Hillary, as is done in Pakistan, no one would have believed that Trump was more popular and liked among Americans.

The supporters of Trump didn’t show up in the pooling surveys, as they were worried that if they declared they were with Trump, they may be doing something wrong by going against the norms of America

The silent majority makes the candidates win elections. The supporters of Trump didn’t show up in the pooling surveys, as they were worried that if they declared they were with Trump, they may be doing something wrong by going against the norms of America. On the election day, same silent majority went into polling stations and voted for Trump.

Stalin once said;

I consider it completely unimportant who in the party will vote, or how; but what is extraordinarily important is this — who will count the votes, and how.”  

It has always been important in Pakistani elections that who have been counting the votes. In 2013 elections, this was the Returning Officers (ROs) who did so. That is why former president Asif Ali Zardari labeled 2013 elections as RO elections.

Read more: PTI vs PML-N : Round two to kick-off soon.

PTI must go into Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP), demanding that:

  1. Elections in 2018 must be conducted on biometric machines.
  2. ECP must tell NADRA (National Data and Registration Authority) to start registering and refreshing the biometric data of voters, whose data NADRA needs to refresh.
  3. Allow ECP more time if ECP demands and conduct election 6 months later than the scheduled time if ECP guarantees biometric election in 2018.

In a country where more than 60 million mobile SIMs can be verified biometrically, why can’t elections be conducted on the same basis? SCP has already declared in its decision on election rigging case that more than 37% percent thumb impressions of the voters didn’t match. Fair biometric elections will also eliminate the extremism from Pakistan, as most of the extremist religious parties claim that silent majority of Pakistanis support them.

PTI and Imran Khan have tried a better candidate in NA-120. What else better candidates Imran Khan is talking of bringing in general elections in 2018? PTI’s candidate in NA-120 wasn’t perfect? She was

Extremist backed political parties can be eliminated from the system only through the fair elections. Only true public representative political parties must be allowed to rule the country. Both Nawaz Sharif (NS) and the establishment know that elections were rigged in 2013 to make NS prime minister.

The government’s that are formed as a result of rigged elections are just a tweet strong (refers to a tweet in which armed forces spokesman rejected the interrogation conducted by NS government on Dawn Leaks and commented on twitter rejecting the notification by the NS government as “Notification is Rejected”).

Read more: Sparring between PML-N and PTI continues in the ECP

In a recent interview with a private TV channel, Imran Khan said that he and his party have learnt many lessons from 2013 general elections. He added that PTI is well prepared for 2018 elections and it will nominate best candidates

Fair biometric polling will also stop ‘establishment’ to play its role in forming and collapsing democratically elected governments (as mentioned in the decision of Asghar Khan Case by SCP). If  PTI and Imran Khan know that they are backed by the military establishment and they are sure that they will be able to win 2018 elections by their ‘backing’, then they may not worry.

But if this is not the case, then the only surviving factor for PTI and Imran Khan is a biometric election. More than PTI and Imran Khan, it’s the survival of Pakistan that is dependent on the voice of the people heard through un-rigged fair elections from now onwards.

Yasser Awan is working in an organization for children’s vaccination. He holds a Master’s degree in Political Science and one in Sociology and has interest in international and domestic politics. He tweets at @Yaaser_awan. The views expressed here are author’s own and do not necessarily reflect GVS editorial policy.

Yasser Awan is working in an organization for children’s vaccination. He holds a Master’s degree in Political Science and one in Sociology and has interest in international and domestic politics. He tweets at @Yaaser_awan

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