PML-N, PTI, PPPP, JUI-F in face off for PK-8 by-election

Peshawar—The Provincial Assembly constituency PK-8 Peshawar-VIII that witnessed historic electoral battle among the political heavyweights in the past is all set to witness yet another tough electoral contest among PML-N, PTI, PPP and JUI-F in by elections to be held today (May 12).
Out of 18 candidates that filed nomination papers for PK-8 constituency fallen vacant due to death of PML-N MPA Akbar Hayat Khan of cardiac arrest in March 16 last, 15 candidates left in the run including PML-N Arbab Muhammad Waseem, PPPP’s Tehmas Khan, PTI’s Shahzad Khan and JUI-F Asif Iqbal Daudzai posing serious challenges to each others.
Traditionally this seat has never been monopolized by a single political entity as it has been won by the JUI-F, PPPP and PML-N in the past. In 2002 general election, this constituency was clinched by JUI-F’s Asif Iqbal Daudzai from the platform of Mutahid Majlis e Amal (MMA) whereas PPPP’s Tehmas Khan won it in 2008 and PML-N Akbar Hayat Khan secured victory in 2013 general elections respectively. For May 12, 2016 by election, all the political parties fielded strong contestants to win this important constituency and show their popularity graph among masses besides independents were also trying their luck.
PML-N has awarded ticket to Arbab Muhammad Waseem Khan, nephew and son-in-law of late MPA Arbab Akbar Haya who has made record development works in PK-8 besides a very popular political figure in Peshawar and Waseem’s can surprise many.
Akbar Hayat Khan had comfortably won this constituency in 2013 general election in a time when PTI swept away Peshawar district, which showed how much he and his family was popular among electorates of his area.
Former provincial minister and JUI-F candidate for PK-8 Asif Iqbal Daudzai, who remained runner-up in 2013 general elections, was very popular political figure and his party has sufficient vote bank in the constituency.
Daudzai had won this constituency in 2002 general election from the plateform of Mutahida Majlis e Amal (MMA) and is expected to give tough time to rivals. PTI’s ticket holder Shahzad Khan was emerged a powerful candidate as the tripartite ruling alliance including Jumaat e Islami and Qumi Watan Party has already put its weight behind him.
On the other hand, PPPP has fielded former MPA Tehmas Khan who won this constituency in 2008 general elections and was posing serious challenge to his political opponents and can make an upset. Similarly, ANP has selected a new face Ijaz Ahmad Seemab for the PK-8 constituency and can surprise many.
There are no prominent or influential persons amongst the independent candidates who can give a tough time or affect the votes of party candidates in the constituency. The provincial assembly seat includes rural Peshawar villages such as Pajjagi, Khazana, Larama, Faqir Kalay, Bakhsu Pul, Nasapa, Haryana, Jatai, Tuktabada, Takhtabad, Haryana, Khazana, Mamo Khatkay and other union councils in the north of Peshawar city.
The political observers believe that this constituency still remained open for all aspirants as every mainstream political party won this seat in the past general elections and no party can claims of its monopoly over it. The turnout might be low as the by-election would be held during the wheat harvesting season and this would benefit the candidates belonging to urban and populated union councils in the constituency.
The total registered voters in the constituency are 136508 including 60648 male and 55860 female for whom 98 polling stations were setup by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).—APP

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