Pak expats in UAE confident over Musharraf winning Pres polls

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Dubai, Oct 6 (UNI) A majority of Pakistani expatriates in the UAE believe that Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf will win the presidential election being held today.

Many of them, however, remain divided over the Pakistan Supreme Court's ruling that the election can be held as scheduled but the results cannot be announced until a final verdict on a set of petitions challenging the candidacy of Gen Musharraf.

Middle East coordinator of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz Group) Choudhary Noorul Hassan Tanvir said, ''The election is against the Constitution and the law of the country. The Supreme Court ruling is not correct,'' Khaleej Times quoted him as saying.

He said the Supreme Court should also take notice of the deal between Gen Musharraf and Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Chairperson Benazir Bhutto which was not in the interest of the nation. ''The President has no right to pardon anyone,'' he noted while referring to an Ordinance promulgated to grant amnesty to politicians and bureaucrats against whom cases of corruption were pending.

President PPP Dubai Mohammad Rashid Chughtai hailed the apex court verdict, saying postponing the election would have deepen the crisis, adding that the Court must pronounce the final decision by November 15.

''The amnesty is not for one person, but for all and it will allow Benazir to work freely,'' he said while reacting to promulgation of the National Reconciliation Ordinance.

Zahoorul Islam, an engineer and poet, said the Supreme Court ruling is in favour of General Musharraf. ''It amounts to face saving because unofficial results will be known anyway and then the argument would be not to disturb the process which has already been completed.'' Shaikh Mohammad Parvaiz, an insurance expert, praised the ruling exuding confidence that the military ruler would be re-elected.

''The writ of the government should always prevail and the Supreme Court judgements should be in the interest of the people.'' An aviation professional Saleem Kashmiri, however, said the election should have been postponed because there would be confusion if the winner would not be announced. Although President Musharraf will win, what would happen if the court decides against his candidature, he sought to know. ''Will the candidate getting the second largest number of votes become president?'' he asked, adding that the Supreme Court decisions were accepted by all, so they should be clear.


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