150 parties, sans PTI, allotted electoral symbols for Feb 8 polls

Mumtaz Alvi
A Pakistani female voter presses her inked thumb onto a ballot paper before she casts her vote at a polling station in Islamabad on May 11, 2013. — ADP/File
A Pakistani female voter presses her inked thumb onto a ballot paper before she casts her vote at a polling station in Islamabad on May 11, 2013. — ADP/File 

  • PTI missing from list of parties who were allotted symbols.
  • PML-N allotted 'tiger', PPP 'sword', IPP 'eagle'. 
  • Transgender contesting from Islamabad allotted 'green chilli'.

ISLAMABAD: About 150 political parties, who are vying for the National and provincial assembly seats in the upcoming general elections, were allotted electoral symbols by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), The News reported Monday.

However, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) — the previous ruling party of the country — was missing from the list of parties uploaded on the ECP website following the 'bat' symbol verdict announced by the Supreme Court on Saturday last week. 

According to the list, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMLN) has been allotted ‘tiger’ symbol, Pakistan Peoples Party Parliamentarians (PPP) ‘arrow’, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) ‘sword’, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-Nazriati (PTI-N) ‘batsman’, Istehkam-e-Pakistan Party (IPP) ‘eagle’, Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) ‘kite’, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) ‘book’, Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan (JI) ‘scale’, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Parliamentarians (PTI-P) ‘turban’, Balochistan National Party (BNP) ‘axe’, Awami National Party (ANP) ‘lantern’, Balochistan National Party Awami ‘camel’ and Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) ‘cow’.

Last week on Saturday, the electoral body issued an order, directing the returning officers that poll symbol should not be allotted to any candidate who belongs to another party.

The five-member bench of the commission, headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja, issued the order, which said:  “Therefore, in exercise of powers, conferred upon the commission under Section 4 of the Elections Act, 2017, the commission hereby, directs that no symbol of any political party be allowed to any such candidate who is member of another political party and seeks allocation of symbol of other political party."

The ECP had already notified 177 symbols for independent candidates.

Meanwhile, the returning officers in the Islamabad Capital Territory allotted electoral symbols to contesting candidates and a total of 119 candidates were issued symbols for three NA constituencies.

As per the statistics shared by the returning officers, a total of 44 candidates would be in the fray in NA-46, whereas as many as 29 candidates will contest as independents from this constituency. Candidates from 16 political parties would also try their luck in this constituency to reach the legislature. A transgender is also contesting from this constituency with ‘green chilli’ as the electoral symbol.

A total of 37 candidates would be vying for NA-47, including 25 independent candidates as well as 12 candidates from different political parties. In NA-47, independent candidate Chaudhry Ilyas Meherban was given ‘battery’ as a symbol. Likewise, Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar would contest with ‘clock’ symbol.

From NA-48, a total of 38 candidates will be in the fray, including 27 candidates to contest as independents, while candidates of 11 parties will also try their luck in this constituency.