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GB elections: Gandapur thanks voters for ‘historic mandate’

GILGIT: Minister for Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan Ali Amin Khan Gandapur has thanked the people of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) for giving  Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) a “historic mandate” of five years in the region, after a landslide victory in the recent general election.

While addressing a press conference today, the minister said the people of GB have rejected both the parties Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) that showed complete confidence of people in the leadership of PM Imran Khan.

Ali Amin Khan Gandapur said the brave people of the region cast their vote despite severe weather conditions and gave a huge mandate to PTI for which they deserve appreciation.

PTI will make all-out efforts to end the sense of deprivation in GB by resolving their grievances at the earliest, the minister promised.

He said PM Imran wishes to bring the enlightened, moderate and progressive face of the GB before the world would be fulfilled soon.

He said the government aims to preserve, protect and present the potential of the region to the world while seeking tourists’ attention towards the untouched beauty of the area. Gandapur paid tribute to the Election Commissioner Gilgit-Baltistan for holding, free fair and peaceful elections.

He said the central leaders of PML-N and PPP had started levelling allegations of rigging before the election in their campaigns and tried to create chaos, but they failed and did not succeed in their nefarious aims.

Gandapur claimed that PTI had followed the election code of conduct during the election campaign and did not make any announcement despite the approval of several mega projects in GB.

The PTI leader said the peaceful protest is a democratic right of everyone, but vandalism, siege and taking the law into hands will not be allowed at any cost.

The vote counting in the GBLA-2 constituency has been done five times at the request of the opposing candidate, he said.

However, if anyone was not satisfied with the election results, he should go to the election tribunal and other legal means, he advised.

He said the opposition parties were making verbal claims and no one was ready to produce any shreds of evidence before the GB election commission which had shown complete impartiality in the election.

According to the official results announced by the election commission of the region on Tuesday,  the PTI is all set to form the government in GB after having secured 22 of its 33 seats.

The PPP and PML-N — both of which have leveled allegations of rigging — hold five and three seats, respectively.

In all, the GB Assembly has 33 seats — 24 of which are contested through directed elections; six are reserved for women and three others reserved for technocrats and professionals. Political parties can nominate their candidates to the latter through proportional representation.