Following the Sindh government’s decision to put off local government elections in Karachi and Hyderabad, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) announced that the party will hold a sit-in outside the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) office in Karachi today while the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has decided to hold a protest rally outside the Sindh Assembly an hour later.
The opposition parties announced to take to the streets after the provincial government, in a surprise late-night move, postponed the local bodies elections due to reservations of its coalition partner Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) over existing delimitations.
"There will be a sit-in today at 3pm outside the Election Commission's Sindh office,” announced JI Karachi President Hafiz Naeem ur Rehman in a press conference.
The JI leader alleged that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) led Sindh government is depriving the people of their constitutional right. The elections have been called off in fear of the people's mandate, he claimed.
Hafiz Naeem also said that there is no legal provision for the Sindh government to put off the elections based "on a letter." He also urged Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja to take “suo motu” notice.
“How is it possible that two days before the polls, the elections are postponed via a notification,” asked Rehman. He was also of the view that ECP should not delay the polls.
“Election Commission should return the letter to the Sindh government, take suo motu notice and take action against them,” urged the JI leader. He also asked the electoral body to continue with its work regarding elections.
After JI’s press conference, PTI leader Ali Zaidi, in a separate media talk, announced that the party will be holding a protest rally outside the Sindh Assembly at 4pm today.
“Citizens of Karachi should reach there and record their protests,” urged Zaidi in a hurriedly called press conference, he held alongside former governor Imran Ismail.
Zaidi said that the a “circus” was held at Chief Minister house between the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) and PPP.