Karachi Under Siege (Part 1): Two Dark Horses Neighing In ‘Open’ NA-247

IRSHAD SALIM (JUL 15, 2018): One of the biggest constituencies of Karachi has become even larger now in form and shape of NA-247 — both quantitatively and qualitatively. Some 876,000 registered voters will exercise their right to vote here on July 25 with anticipated vote count forecasted to exceed the range of 56 to 67 […]

Khalai Makhlook Is a Reality Engaged in Machinations From Beyond the Borders: Aslam Beg

MIRZA ASLAM BEG: AFTER a long hearing, extending over several sessions, the trial court gave the verdict against Nawaz Sharif, rejecting their appeal for seven days delay, enabling them to be present on the occasion. It is a harsh judgment which sentenced Nawaz Sharif to 10 years in prison and a fine of 8 million […]

Pakistan’s ‘Bible Belt’ And The Jeep Drawing Attention, Traction

IRSHAD SALIM (JUL 7, 2018): Out of the 105 million Pakistanis who are expected to vote on July 25 in the country’s third successive polls, nearly 47 million are registered female voters while 44 million among all registered voters are between the ages of 18 and 35. This means over 43% of the voters are […]

PML-Nawaz Policies Turned Balochistan Into ‘Pakhtunistan’: Former PM Jamali

“I haven’t joined PTI but have allowed my sons to shake hands with Imran” JUN 10, 2018 — Days after quitting Nawaz-led ruling party the PML, former prime minister and senior Baloch politician Zafarullah Khan Jamali has upped the ante against the deposed prime minister. Jamali has criticized Nawaz Sharif’s policies towards his resource-rich province, […]

‘We Need Completely Clean People to Contest Polls’: Supreme Court

An implementation bench by the top court would be formed on how to conduct the elections;  the court would itself ensure that election rules regarding expenditure and banner sizes are followed. Jun 6, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) —  Considered one of the defining moments of elections 2018, the country’s top court on Wednesday made it mandatory for […]

Benazir and Zardari’s Son Bilawal Seeking Revival of Bhutto Legacy in Elections 2018

Most likely route back to power could be a post-election alliance with Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) JUN 5, 2018 — Pakistan’s only major left-leaning political party is fighting for its electoral relevance and to preserve the legacy of the country’s best-known political dynasty “the Bhutto’s” weeks before the country heads to the polls. In […]

1990 Poll Rigging: With 3 Top Judges at Helm of Affairs, Asghar Khan Case May See Closure

Jun 3, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Supreme Court Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar on Saturday issued notices to ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif and twenty other politicians and Army officials in connection with manipulation of 1990 elections which led the conservative right-wing Islami Jamhoori Ittehad front to engineer defeat of Benazir Bhutto led left-of-the-center Pakistan Peoples […]

‘Kite’ Unites MQM Leaders, Farooq Sattar Threatens Polls Boycott

May 31, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Chief of Karachi’s largest and strongest political party Muttahida Qaumi Movement Dr. Farooq Sattar on Wednesday said the party will boycott upcoming polls if it is not allowed to do politics within the ambit of country’s constitution. “If MQM reservations were not resolved we will boycott upcoming elections,” — July […]

US Supports Free, Fair, Transparent Polls in Pakistan: State Dept

U.S. ‘hopes the electoral reform law passed in 2017 will facilitate peaceful transfer of power to elected government after the polls’ May 30, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — The United States supports free, fair and transparent elections in Pakistan, a US State Department spokesperson said in Washington on Tuesday, expressing hope that the electoral reform law passed […]

‘No Party Will Hold The Majority In The Next Assembly’: Asif Ali Zardari

May 27, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Former President and Co-Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party Asif Ali Zardari on Saturday predicted no party will hold the majority in the next assembly — a view many observers have been voicing in the print media and on talk shows lately. However, if Gallup Pakistan’s most recent opinion poll is to […]

Buoyed By Huge Rallies, Nawaz Sharpens His “Anti-Establishment” Narrative In Court, Media

Yesterday, however, political leaders and lawmakers set their differences aside and voted unitedly for the merger of tribal areas (Fata) with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province May 25, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been sharing his views and stances — both in court and outside with the media — on the ongoing investigations […]

Who Could Possibly Be The Caretaker Prime Minister Until Elections 2018 Are Held

IRSHAD SALIM (May 22, 2018) — The 5-year term of the present PML-N government comes to an end on May 31, after which the caretaker set-up will be put in place to hold elections which are expected to be held in the last week of July. The formation of a caretaker setup will be preceded […]

PML-N Manifesto Scorecard: Myth Versus Reality

IRSHAD SALIM (May 19, 2018) — The ruling party PML-N’s election manifesto publicly announced in 2013 for the center and the provinces — mainly Punjab, its electoral stronghold — reveal not a very promising food on the table for the entire nation. Sharifs’ party ruled at the center during the last five years (2013-2018) and […]

Punjab Assembly Passes 12 Bills in 45 Minutes in Last Session Before Elections 2018

May 17, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — In a filibuster, the provincial treasury passed 12 bills in just 45 minutes during the Punjab Assembly session on Wednesday, clearing the PML-N led government’s list of legislation before the completion of its tenure on May 31. Elections are due in the next 90 days thereafter. And while doing so […]

VIDEO: This Person Says “WE NEED ONE NARRATIVE” on All Major Issues

IRSHAD SALIM (May 16, 2018) — On May 3rd, I attended the World Freedom Day event organized by Karachi Media Club — its president Mubasher Mir and General Secretary Manzar Naqvi says it’s a media think-tank focused on Karachi as its ground zero and the whole country in its outreach program. However, with outer contours […]

UK ‘Prime Destination’ For Money Laundering From Pakistan: Report

Last year, the then Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had a figure of US$200Bln as a sum that Pakistani citizens have stashed away in the Swiss bank. An estimated 4 to 5 times this figure is speculated to be held as assets by Pakistanis abroad– both lawfully and through inappropriate means including lacuna in laws enacted […]

Farooq Sattar Quits as Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Convener

May 15, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Chief of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) Dr Farooq Sattar has announced he will quit as convener of the Sindh urban-based party calling it a “powerless office”, while adding that he would not contest in the next general elections. “I will remain in the party as a common worker,” he […]

‘Play to Vote’ Football Tournament Aims to Encourage Pakistani Women’s Participation in Polls

In October, Pakistan enacted the Elections Act to end disenfranchisement of women. Although a constitutional right, millions of women have been de facto barred from voting through agreements among political parties, local elders, and powerful figures, using outdated customs as an excuse. May 14, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — A three-day women’s football tournament celebrating female leadership […]

Eight Ruling Party Lawmakers From Punjab, Balochistan Jump Ship

In a related note, former Chief Minister of Punjab, Dost Muhammad Khosa has decided to join Imran Khan-led PTI. May 10, 2018 — A day after 15 former Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders under the banner of “Janubi Punjab Suba Mahaz” (JPSM) shook hands with Imran Khan, eight more ruling party lawmakers defected to the […]

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal Shot at, Injured During Election Rally in Hometown

“…this is a clear effort to delay the coming elections,” tweeted journalist Hamid Mir, according to the Newsweek. May 6, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Federal Minister for Interior Ahsan Iqbal was attacked in Punjab’s Narowal district– his home town on Sunday evening, Express News reported. The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader was attacked during the party’s […]