GB polls: PTI in the lead with 10 seats, PPP bags 3 and PML-N wins 2

PPP threatens ‘extreme measures if poll rigging not reversed’

Statesman Report

GILGIT: A day after unofficial results of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) election showed unfavourable outcome for Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari threatened to take 'extreme and difficult path' if the alleged rigging was not reversed.

The ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has emerged as the victor of the poll as the party and its ally managed to secure at least 11 seats, according to unofficial and unconfirmed results.

The PTI bagged 10 seats, independent candidates won seven and PPP managed to clinch three seats.

The Majlis Wahdatul Muslimeen (MWM), an ally of the PTI, has emerged victorious in one out total 23 constituencies up for grabs while Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) only managed to bag two seats.

Addressing a sit-in in front of Deputy Commissioner of Gilgit city, Bilawal said that the PPP candidates were pressurised to leave the party and join the PTI but "each and every one of them remained steadfast with the party except one".

He said that when the authorities witnessed the support for the PPP by the people of G-B from Siachen to Gilgit, they got worried. "The election commission started supporting the illegal acts of the PTI ministers," he alleged, adding that the Chief Election Commissioner (ECP) visited the region to hold a press conference against the opposition parties instead of stopping the federal minister from unlawful acts.

The PPP chairman claimed that three seats were "clearly" snatched from the PPP but warned that no one will be allowed to do so, saying that his party will continue to protest at every place where alleged rigging occurred.

"We will not allow the puppet, the selected and the selectors to steal the elections. The selectors knew that PTI does not exist in Gilgit-Baltistan. Everyone knows that the people of G-B are with the PPP."

He alleged that PPP candidate Jamil Ahmed was leading by 400 votes last night. However, he was shown trailing behind by two votes in the final count Monday morning.

Bilawal also said that the people of G-B snatched their rights from Dogra Raj and they will again snatch back their rights, warning not to push him to the extent that he takes "extreme measures".

He urged the people to continue their protest and if the seats which were snatched through rigging are not given to the people, and the PPP then the protest will go to Islamabad and he will lead that protest.

The PPP leader said that he is not going anywhere till the rights of the people are given to them, added that if the rigging is not reversed then he will choose an extreme and difficult path but that will be the path to victory. He further said that he had already warned to accept the verdict of the people otherwise there will be dire consequences.