ISLAMABAD - Pakistan People’s Party is gravely concerned that by-election in NA-205 Ghotki scheduled for July 18 may be postponed and urged the Supreme Court to ensure that the election is held as per schedule.

This has been stated by Farhatullah Babar, Secretary General of the Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians in a statement.

He said that after the announcement of election schedule on June 10 nomination papers were filed by candidates including by PPPP’s Sardar Mohammad Bux Mahar. After scrutiny of nomination papers and dismissal of appeals against PPPP candidate by the Election Tribunal the final list of candidates was also announced.

Since then however pressure has been exerted on local administration and politicians to keep the PPPP candidate out of the race, he said.

Two mukhtiarkars of Ghotki were abducted in search of some incriminating documents against the PPPP candidate. FIRs have already been registered against the abduction of mukhtiarkars, he said. Furthermore political opponents are also using resources of local government against the PPPP and a complaint in this regard was made to the Election Commission on July 4, he said.

Meanwhile the PPPP candidature was also challenged through a constitutional petition.

After arguments on July 11, the judgment was reserved which reportedly will be announced on July 16.

However, since campaigning will come to an end on July 16 the PPPP candidate will be left with no time to file an appeal in case the verdict went against him. Not only a candidate but a political party would effectively be disenfranchised, he said.

Similar petitions are also fixed for judgment against other candidates as well and in case of judgment against them would also entail their disenfranchisement.

It is also strongly apprehended that this might result in postponing the bye election in Ghotki, citing the court orders as the reason, he said.

The PPP demands that under NO circumstances the July 18 Ghotki bye election be postponed. It urges the Honorable Supreme Court to ensure that elections be not postponed and that free, fair and transparent elections are held under the Constitution and the rights of people protected, he said.