Counting underway for by-polls at PS-43, PS-88 and PB-20 constituencies

A tough contest is expected between ruling PPP and PTI in PS-88 Malir by-election

Web Desk
An ECP officials sets up a ballot box at a polling station. Photo: File

  • Polling held under strict security
  • Vacant Sindh Assembly seats were previously held by PPP, while the Balochistan Assembly seat was occupied by JUI-F
  • All the MPAs had lost their lives to coronavirus

KARACHI: Polling took place on Tuesday in the by-elections for vacant Sindh and Balochistan Assembly seats — PS-43 Sanghar III, PS-88 Malir II and PB-20 Pishin III.

All three seats fell vacant, last year after the lawmakers elected from the seats passed away due to the coronavirus.

In all the three seats, counting is now underway.

PS-43 Sanghar III

At least seven candidates are vying for the vacant Sindh Assembly seat from Sanghar with many observers seeing a close contest between PPP’s Jam Shabbir Ali and PTI’s Mushtaq Junejo.

The seat had fallen vacant after PPP Jam Madad Ali passed away due to coronavirus complications in November of last year.

The constituency has 157,210 voters with 132 polling stations set up to facilitate them in the electoral process. Out of the 132, 37 have been declared extremely sensitive and 34 are sensitive.

Read more: PPP lawmaker Jam Madad Ali dies of COVID-19

The constituency has 88,034 male votes and 69,176 female votes. The ECP has set up 43 male, 34 female, 64 mixed voting booths during the by-polls.

The government deployed 1,700 police officers and security personnel for the by-election.

PS-88 Malir II

As many as 20 candidates are vying for the Sindh Assembly seat PS-88, that fell vacant after the death of Sindh’s Minister for Human Settlement Ghulam Murtaza Baloch. The lawmaker had passed away due to coronavirus in June of last year.

The constituency has 145,627 voters with 108 polling stations set up to facilitate the registered voters. Out of the 108, 33 have been declared extremely sensitive and 36 are sensitive.

The constituency has 81,425 male voters and 64,102 female voters.

Read more: Sindh minister Ghulam Murtaza Baloch dies of coronavirus

In the 2018 General Elections, the seat was hotly contested among four parties — PPP, PTI, MQM and Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan.

This time the PPP has fielded Muhammad Yousuf Baloch as its candidate, PTI has named Jansher Junejo, Muttahida Qaumi Movement has named former MPA Sajid Ahmed and Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan's has fielded Syed Kashif Ali.

PB-20 Pishin III

The voters of Pishin III constituency are also casting their votes for the vacant PB-20 seat. The seat fell vacant after Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl’s (JUI-F) Syed Fazal Agha passed away due to COVID-19 in May of last year.

At least 27 candidates are vying for the vacant seat in the ongoing by-poll.

The constituency has 99,849 registered voters and 113 polling stations have been set up to facilitate those voters. Out of the 113, 45 of those are for male, 37 for female and 31 mixed polling stations.

Read more: Two more lawmakers pass away from COVID-19

According to DC Pishin Qaim Lashari three polling stations were declared extremely sensitive, 90 sensitive and 20 have been declared normal.

At least, 450 FC and 510 Levies personnel have been deployed in the constituency for a smooth election.

Observers believe that Balochistan Awami Party’s Asmatullah Tareen, PDM’s joint candidate Azizullah Agha and three independent candidates Amardeen Agha, Sajid Noor Khan and Aismatullah are the favourites to win the by-poll.