Candidate backed by banned Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat party routs Sharif's PML in Punjab Assembly bypoll

| Updated: Dec 02, 2016 18:36 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], Dec. 2 (ANI): Maulana Masroor Nawaz Jhangvi, an Independent candidate backed by the banned Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ), has won the Punjab Assembly's PP-78 bypoll on Thursday with a margin of 12,793 votes, routing candidates fielded by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif-led Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), Pakistan Peoples Party and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf. According to unofficial results, Nawaz - son of the slain Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, who founded the now defunct Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan - received 48,562 votes, whereas his closest rival Azad Nasir Ansari of the PML (Nawaz) received 35,469 votes, reported the Dawn. The PPP and PTI were virtually routed with their candidates Sarfaraz Rabbani and Arfa Majeed securing 3,671 and 2,821 votes, respectively. Earlier, polling at the 171 polling stations of the constituency proceeded peacefully and the overall voter turnout appears to be around 30 percent. The PTI's national and provincial leaders had paid scant attention to the by-election campaign. On the other hand, PPP's top leadership, including former prime minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani, opposition leader Syed Khurshid Shah, Sindh Assembly Deputy Speaker Shehla Raza and members of the central executive committee, including Chaudhry Manzoor had visited the constituency, addressed rallies and corner meetings and engaged in door-to-door campaigning. (ANI)