Islamabad, June 16 (EFE).- One person was killed and eight others were injured as violence erupted during a by-election in Pakistan’s port city of Karachi on Thursday, police said.
“Violence has been happening between different party workers throughout the day in which one person got killed and eight were injured,” Farid Hussain, a police official at the Karachi’s south region police control told EFE.
The National Assembly constituency NA-240 fell vacant after the death of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan lawmaker Iqbal Muhammad Ali in April.
There were 25 candidates contesting in the by-election with main fight between the MQM-P, Pakistan Peoples Party, and far right Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP).
TLP has claimed unknown armed men opened fire on the vehicle of their party chief Hafiz Saad Rizvi. The party also shared pictures of a vehicle with the windscreen apparently damaged by bullets.
Over half a million voters are registered in the constituency. Hours before the polling, the Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) announced withdrawing from the contest in favor of the PPP, its ally in the central government.
Former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf boycotted the election citing lack of confidence on the current Election Commission and the election process.
Khan was ousted from government following a no-confidence motion against him on Apr.10 this year, after many supporters in the parliament withdrew support.
The former prime minister blamed foreign forces, particularly the US, of scheming his ouster as a result of his visit to Russia at the outset of its invasion of Ukraine.
The country has since witnessed large scale protests by his party demanding fresh general elections, claiming the mandate of the current government is not legitimate. EFE