Canvassing for Islamabad LG elections to kick off after Dec 1.

ISLAMABAD -- With local government (LG) elections in the capital just over a month away, leaders of major political parties - the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) - are looking forward to a rousing election campaign after the allotment of election symbols on Dec 1.

PTI leader Shiraz Kiani said that currently his party's main target was the long march but after December 1, the party 'will go for a full-fledged campaign to win a majority of seats'.

The PTI will win a majority of union councils to elect its mayor in the capital, he claimed. 'We will repeat our performance of by-elections in the local government elections as PDM's government has failed to deliver and more and more people are joining us,' Mr Kiani added.

According to the PTI leader, a petition seeking the lifting of Section 144 was pending in the Islamabad High Court because it would not be possible for thousands of candidates to get approval for public gatherings and for the district administration to entertain such a large number of requests, Mr Kiani said, adding that elections would be held in 101 union councils and in each union council, there were 12 seats which meant that 'more than 3,000 candidates would be contesting elections'.

DC says candidates to be allowed to organise gatherings after request

PML-N leader Sardar Mahtab said in 2015, his party won a majority of the local government seats and vowed to win Islamabad's local government elections once again.

'PML-N is a symbol of development...we launched many development projects in Islamabad,' he said and added that based on development work the party will 'win this election comfortably'.

Meanwhile, PPP and PML-N also plan to field joint candidates in some union councils against the PTI.

PPP's Central Secretariat In-Charge Sibtul Haider Bukhari said that the joint nominees would be fielded in at least 15 union councils, adding that the PPP will win a significant number of seats.

According to the Deputy Commissioner Irfan Nawaz Memon, Section 144, imposed in the federal capital in light of the PTI long march, would not come into the way of canvassing, as candidates will be allowed to organise rallies after permission.

The elections will be held on Dec 31 and symbols for political parties and independent candidates will be allocated on Dec 1 after which the campaign will take off, Mr Memon said.

'[Local bodies] elections are a constitutional...

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