PESHAWAR: Shaukat Tarin of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was elected member of the Senate on the vacant seat from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in a straight and one-sided contest here on Monday.
He received 87 votes in the 145-member House against his rivals of the Awami National Party (ANP) Shaukat Amirzada and Zahir Shah of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUIF) who got 13 votes each.
Nine votes were declared invalid and one was rejected out of the total 123 polled ballots. The PTI has 94 members in the KP Assembly besides four members of its ally the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP), one of the Pakistan Muslim League Quaid (PMLQ) and two independents against 44 members of the joint opposition.
The JUI F has 15 members, ANP 12, PML-N seven, PPP five , JI three while there are two independent members. Most of the opposition members, including those from the PPP, PMLN and JI remained absent besides five MPAs of the ruling party.
The seat was vacated by Ayub Afridi of the PTI so that Shaukat Tarin, advisor to the Prime Minister on Finance, could be elected as a senator. Later, talking to the media, the senator-elect thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan for awarding him the party ticket.
He said he had worked for the welfare of people of KP in the past and would do so in the future as well, promising to launch development projects in the province. Shaukat Tarin said the Ehsas Rashun programme has been launched to provide relief to the poor and added interest-free loans would be given to improve the economic condition of the people.
Of the energy shortage he said gas reserves were depleting nine to ten per cent annually, however, the situation would improve with the discovery of natural gas in some areas.