ISLAMABAD: The All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) announced boycott of the 2013 elections just days before the balloting in protest against a life-time ban on its founder Pervez Musharraf from running for a public office. But interestingly, two candidates of the party – one each for National Assembly and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly – still contested and won the elections in Chitral district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.
Former military ruler Pervez Musharraf returned to Pakistan in March after a four-year self-exile to lead his party in the 2013 elections. He wanted to contest from four constituencies, including NA-32 (Chitral), but his nomination papers were rejected for all the constituencies. Not only that, the Peshawar High Court also slapped a life-time ban on him from contesting elections.
Shahzada Iftikharuddin, the covering candidate for Musharraf, contested the election despite his party’s boycott and defeated his rival, Abdul Latif of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, by a margin of over 3,000 votes. Shahzada Iftikharuddin, son of Shahzada Moiuddin, belongs to the royal family of Chitral. In the past his father won this constituency four times.
Similarly, an APML candidate for the K-P Assembly seat PK-90 (Chitral), Ghulam Muhammad, defeated PPP’s Sardar Hussain. However, another AMPL candidate, Shahzada Khalid Pervaiz, brother of Shahzada Iftikharuddin, lost to PPP’s Saleem Khan on PK-89 (Chitral).
Published in The Express Tribune, May 13th, 2013.