Swat: In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, polling for by-election on a vacant seat of PK-7 Swat constituency is underway, and it will continue till five in the evening without any break.
Four candidates are in the run for the seat.
One hundred twenty-four polling stations and three hundred eight polling booths have been established for the by-election.
The seat had fallen vacant after the death of Awami National Party Member Provincial Assembly Waqar Ahmed Khan, has a total 1,83,308 registered voters, including 1,020,88 male and 81,220 female voters.
According to the Election Commission, a total 124 polling stations have been established – 30 for male, 28 for female and 66 combined.
A close contest is expected among two candidates, including Fazal Maula of PTI and Husain Ahmed alias Khan Nawab of ANP, while Dawlat Khan of Tehreek-e-Inqilab Political Movement and independent candidate of PTI are also contesting the by-election.
The PML-N, JUI-F and PPP have withdrawn their candidates from the contest and have announced support for ANP candidate Hussain Ahmad Khan. The ANP candidate also has the support of Jamaat-e-Islami and Qaumi Watan Party.
It is to be recalled that PTI’s Provincial Minister Dr Amjad Ali had won this seat in the July, 2018 general elections but he had to vacate this seat after winning two seats.
Later, in the by-elections, ANP’s Waqar Ahmad Khan won the seat by a thin margin of 228 votes with the support of opposition parties.
During the current by-election, the ANP is being supported all the political parties. However, being the home constituency of former federal minister Murad Saeed and the home district of Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, PTI candidate Fazal Maula is being seen the most favorite candidate.
Political analysts, however, are of the view that if the workers of opposition parties mange to bring out their voters, it will be difficult for the PTI to win this seat.
On the other hand, one of the PTI worker Muhammad Ali Shah is also in the field as an independent candidate in the constituency who can divide the party’s vote, which will ultimately benefit the ANP candidate.