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Soul-searching within PTI, JI after MQM victory

KARACHI: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf is contemplating a new plan focusing on enhancing working class contacts as a way to regain lost ground to rival MQM in the April 7 by-polls.


This purported ‘new strategy’ is being deliberated upon after the PTI faced ‘betrayal’ by its candidate, who withdrew in favour of the MQM a few hours before the polling in NA-245 constituency, and for losing out on PS-115.

Meanwhile, Jamaat-i-Islami, after staying out of the by-polls, looks towards its “religious edge” to regain political ground lost to the MQM and other political parties in the city.

Talking about the by-polls, PTI-Karachi leader Ali Zaidi said that the recently finished election was more of a “workers poll in which party workers participated more than the people” which was evident by a low turnout.

Beginning with the PTI, the political party faced a huge blow during April 7 by-polls when its candidate from NA-245, Amjadullah Khan, defected to the MQM at the last moment citing “mismanagement and overall ignore during agitation from the PTI”. At the same time, despite walking out at the last moment, Khan had managed to gain 1,489 votes from the constituency.

Three years back, during the general elections of 2013, PTI candidates showed that they enjoyed a vote bank in MQM strongholds. For example, PTI candidate Riaz Haider gained more than 50,000 votes from the same constituency, NA-245, against MQM candidate Rehan Hashmi who bagged 100,000 votes.

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