By Zulfiqar Ahmad
ISLAMABAD, Sept 30: With the two rival candidates engrossed in praying for their luck, the two-men commission formed by the election tribunal of Peshawar High Court here on Monday started the recounting of rejected votes in PK-90 upper Chitral.
The recounting took place at the office of the district returning officer (district and sessions judge) Chitral amid tight police security with crowds dancing outside like intoxicated Malangs, chanting slogans in support of their candidates.
ChitralToday sources privy to the development seeking complete anonymity at the end of the day said All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) MPA Ghulam Muhammad had bagged seven and his rival Sardar Hussain of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) three more votes. However, talking to ChitralToday on phone from Chitral late in the night, Sardar Hussain claimed that he had bagged six more votes against only four of Ghulam Mohammad.
The sources said the recounting process might take two-three more days, adding the number of rejected votes and postal ballots were being carefully recounted in the presence of both the candidates and their lawyers.
On the first day, rejected votes of about 40 polling stations were recounted. There are total 108 polling stations to be covered apart from the postal ballots. It may be noted that as many as 2,995 votes had been declared as rejected on May 11 election. And there are also 2,000 postal ballot papers to be recounted.
The sources said extraordinary security arrangements had been made to avoid any untoward incident outside the office of the DRO. The members of the commission, who are staying at the PTDC motel, have also been provided foolproof security as per directives of the election tribunal.