Musharraf slams 'biased' opinion polls

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Islamabad, Feb 15 : Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has rubbished results of the opinion polls conducted by foreign organisations, saying that the opinions of 3,000 people cannot be taken as the opinion of 160 million Pakistanis.

Musharraf asked foreign organisations and NGOs not to "disturb the peace of this region. You are playing with the peace of the world."

Urging the media and foreign organisations not to create a perception that the elections were rigged, Musharraf said: "It would push us into a bind," adding that he and his government were trying to take the country out of this bind.

"It will seriously harm the country," the Dawn quoted him, as saying.

Expressing his doubt over the selection of people for the opinion polls, Musharraf said that the NGOs involved were biased against the government.

"Declaring certain candidates or parties winner is malicious and disturbs peace," he said.

Assuring that the February 18 elections would be free, fair and transparent, Musharraf said that pre-judging election results raised undue hopes and might result in violence during and after the polls.

Musharraf said that he was the "greatest believer" in democracy, which could take the country forward on the path of socio-economic development.

He also called upon the Pakistanis not to be misled by any "deceit and false propaganda."

"Whoever wins may form the government and if there is no majority for a single party, there can be a coalition government," Musharraf pointed out.

ANI

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