MARDAN: Pakistan People's Party (PPP)'s Zeeshan Khanzada, son of Senator Khanzada Khan, may contest the upcoming election as an independent candidate for NA-22 and PK-49 after he was not allotted ticket by the party, sources said.
Former PPP provincial president Senator Khanzada Khan had won election on the erstwhile NA-11, now NA-22, in 2009. He was defeated by PTI candidate Mujahid Khan in the 2013 general election.
Later, Khanzada became a senator on the party ticket. However, his son Zeeshan Khanzada continued his contacts with the party workers of NA-22 and there was an impression that he would be the party candidate for the seat. When Khwaja Hoti joined PPP, Zeeshan left NA-22 for Hoti and continued his political activities in PK-49.
The sources said the party leadership also hinted that he would be the party candidate for the seat. For the last eight months, Zeeshan has continued his political activities in PK-49 and his supporters also installed his signboards and portraits in the constituency while campaigning for him.
However, the PPP's parliamentary board allotted the PK-49 ticket to Khaista, widow of late deputy speaker Abdul Akbar Khan instead of Zeeshan. This prompted Zeeshan to call a meeting of his supporters from PK-49 who rejected the decision of parliamentary board.
The sources said leaders of different political parties including PTI contacted Zeeshan and offered him ticket for NA-22. However, Zeeshan and Senator Khanzada didn't want to end more than 40-year affiliation and loyalty with PPP.
Zeeshan decided to contest for NA-22 and PK-49 as an independent candidate. Zeeshan's contest as an independent candidate in NA-22 and PK-49 may create problems for party candidates.
Also read: Sajjad Khan vs Sheikh Rashid Shafique