ISLAMABAD: Following the failure of the former ruling party’s plans to materialize, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) announced on Saturday night that its candidates would independently participate in the upcoming elections.
Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, the now-former chairman of PTI, conveyed to journalists at the Supreme Court in Islamabad, “All PTI candidates will contest independently. We will release a list of our candidates along with their election symbols.”
The decision for independent participation came after the Supreme Court upheld the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) ruling to strip PTI of its ‘bat’ symbol. Additionally, the party’s attempt to issue tickets under Tehreek-e-Insaf Nazriati’s (PTI-N) symbol faced a setback as the PTI-N chairman withdrew from the deal.
Even if PTI-N had agreed to issue tickets, the ECP, in response to PTI’s actions, took note of “deceiving attempts” by some candidates through their applications. The ECP clarified that candidates contradicting their original party affiliation in affidavits would not be allotted the electoral symbol of another political party.
In a press conference, Gohar expressed disappointment with the Supreme Court’s “controversial” order issued that day. He mentioned that despite being stripped of his title as chairman due to invalid intra-party polls, the majority of Pakistan’s voters still support PTI.
Gohar affirmed, “Whether we have the bat or not, the people will still vote for us,” emphasizing the court’s responsibility to guarantee every person’s basic rights. He added that his party would challenge the Supreme Court’s verdict.