Clashes between party workers, police at polling stations
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan People’s Party on Sunday traded barbs as they blamed each other for rigging during the by-elections on two seats of the National Assembly in Sindh.
Tensions remained high as allegations of electoral rigging surfaced on social media. PTI’s Ali Haider alleged that PPP leaders were in breach of the electoral commission’s regulations as they apparently roamed around polling stations with armed private guards.
The claims were soon followed by video footage of PTI Ka rachi President Bilal Ahmed Ghaffar which was posted by another party leader and former federal minister Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi.
Ghaffar can be heard saying that PPP workers “threw him to the floor” before 10 to 15 people hit him with bricks.
“Saleem Baloch MPA was the first one who attacked me,” he said alleging that police “did not respond” as the attack took place.
The claims were also endorsed by PTI Sindh’s spokesperson Arsalan Taj who said that “Hakeem Baloch’s son” was behind the alleged attack.
On the other hand, PPP’s Danial Khokhar claimed that the attack had in fact been instigated by Ghaffar and an aggressive “group” of PTI workers which had also left Khokhar injured.
PPP leaders also shared videos of PTI’s Gohar Khatak apparently “threatening” the presiding officers at polling stations.
As the reports caught fire on social media, the PPP candidate Hakeem Baloch reached polling station 123 under fears that the polling may be stopped sooner.
Meanwhile, clashes erupted between different party workers and police outside the polling stations in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa
In the polling station of the Municipal Girls Intercollege in Peshawar, there was a bitter exchange between Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf MPA Asif Khan and Awami National Party workers.
The ANP workers got angry on the arrival of PTI MPA at the polling station. They raised slogans against the MPA and there was a bitter exchange of words between them. The police kicked out the supporters of both the parties.
The polling process was halted for a while but it was resumed after the intervention of the police. On the other hand, there was a clash between PTI women supporters and the police at the polling stations 18 and 20 of the American Mission Primary School for Women in Faisalabad’s Model Town area.