[QODLink]
Central & South Asia

Imran Khan's party wins Karachi revote

Results show PTI has taken national assembly seat as party buries senior member killed hours before re-polling.

Last Modified: 20 May 2013 10:49
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

The party of former Pakistani cricket star Imran Khan has secured victory in a repeat election held in one constituency of violence-plagued Karachi, election officials say.

Khan's Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) party's candidate, Arif Alvi, secured 77,659 votes to beat his closest rival Khushbakht Shujaat of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) who polled 30,365 votes, Najib Ahmed, the election commission spokesman, said giving the unofficial results.

Polling was re-run after complaints of ballot-stuffing in the upmarket district of the vast port city, Pakistan's economic engine, during the May 11 general election.

Voting was held under tight security in 43 polling stations on Sunday, a day after Zahra Shahid Hussain, a provincial vice-president for the PTI, was shot dead outside her home in the city.

The win sets the stage for protests and counter-protests, as the city reels from Sunday's killing.

Hussain was attacked hours before re-elections took place in the NA-250 constituency of Karachi.

The motives behind the attack remained unclear, but Khan has blamed the rival MQM, which has a stronghold on Karachi.

Hussain "was leaving her home for some work when three gunmen attacked her. She thought they wanted to snatch her purse and handed it over to them but they killed her," Firdous Shamim, a local PTI leader, told the AFP news agency.

Police said all three assailants escaped after the attack late on Saturday.

"They shot her with one bullet near her chin and she could not survive," Nasir Aftab, a senior police official, told AFP.

'Charged political debate'

Al Jazeera's Imtiaz Tyab, reporting from the capital Islamabad, said that a message on Twitter sent out by Khan, accusing MQM of being behind the attack, had "charged the political debate in Pakistan".

Spotlight
Coverage of 2013 general election across the politically divided South Asian nation.

Altaf Hussain, the MQM leader, is wanted on murder charges in Pakistan and leads his party from self-imposed exile in England.

Khan and a party spokesperson condemned the killing and denounced it as a security failure on the part of the provincial government 

The MQM is designated as a terrorist organisation by Canada, a charge it strongly denies.

Our correspondents said that while "no violence was reported during the voting period, some polling stations saw low voter turnout".

360

Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Frustration grows in Kiev as pledges to end corruption and abuse of power stagnate after Maidan Square protest.
Thousands of Houthi supporters have called for the fall of Yemen's government. But what do the Houthis really want?
New ration reductions and movement restrictions have refugees from Myanmar anxious about their future in Thailand.
US lawyers say poor translations of election materials disenfranchise Native voters.
US drones in Pakistan have killed thousands since 2004. How have leaders defended or decried these deadly planes?
join our mailing list