Karachi witnesses lowest voter turnout: report


KARACHI: Despite Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) bagging 14 out of 21 seats in Karachi in a surprising turn of events, the city witnessed one of the lowest voter turnouts in the recent history of general elections, local media reports have informed.

According to an analysis of the statistics released by the Election Commission of Pakistan, the average turnout remained of 40 percent in the city as opposed to 55 percent during the 2013 elections.

Interestingly, the highest voter turnout was in the constituencies won by Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarian (PPPP) while the lowest turnout was witnessed in the areas where PTI won.

Three PTI winning candidates obtained less than 10 percent of the registered votes in their respective constituencies. Even PTI stalwart Muhammad Faisal Vawda who had beaten PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif in NA-249 with a thin margin of 718 votes, could only obtain 10.6 percent of the total registered votes of the constituency. Vawda won the seat with 35,344 votes out of 331,430 votes registered in the constituency,

PTI chief Imran Khan came up with the best results among his party candidates in Karachi by obtaining 22.74 percent votes in NA-243. The turnout in his constituency was 41.1 percent.

The turnout was the highest at 50.4 percent in NA-236 where PPPP’s Jam Abdul Karim won the seat. He obtained 28 percent of the total 233,028 votes. PPPP’s Syed Rafiullah emerged victorious in NA-238 where the turnout was second highest at 44 percent.

Over all on 11 Karachi seats the turnout was less than 40 percent.

Women turnout remained even lower in Karachi constituencies with lowest in NA-250 at 27.1 percent.

Under the Elections Act 2017, the ECP can cancel the elections in any constituency where female turnout is less than 10 percent.