QUETTA: Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Thursday strongly criticised the country’s bureaucracy and establishment for allegedly “controlling electoral process”.
Addressing an Ulema convention in Quetta, Fazl said that yesterday was also a black day in parliament, adding that attempts were being made to control the electoral process of the country before the general elections of 2023.
He further added that the country was “no one’s property” and would be run with the “will of the people and the Constitution”. “When elections arrive, our country’s bureaucracy and establishment keep control of electoral results so the Western world can be told to not worry about religious people,” he added.
“This time we have taken notice of this. We took such notice that the JUI carried out ’14 million marches’ in all the country and then lastly did the ‘Azadi March’, says Maulana Fazl, who is also the chairman of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM).
He continued, “The participation of the public in hundreds and thousands in our marches sent the world this message that the establishment gives wrong reporting to you by doing rigging.”
The PDM chief further said movements for the supremacy of democracy were being launched since the time of General Zia. “However, why aren’t we getting results? The grip of non-democratic forces over us continues to get stronger,” he added.
“First we will fight for our country’s freedom. When the country is freed and democracy completed, then any resulting arrival to power would be acceptable”, Rehman said.
The government and its allies on Wednesday pulled off a victory against the opposition during a joint sitting of parliament by succeeding in passing the bills that pave the way for holding the next general elections in the country through the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) and giving around nine million overseas Pakistanis the right to cast their votes in the 2023 polls.
However, the legislation pertaining to the electoral reforms – The Election (Amendment) Bill, 2021 – was deferred and only the bills related to using the EVMs and enabling overseas Pakistanis to cast votes were passed.