Hindu woman files nomination for general election in KPK

Saveera Parkash, a member of the Hindu community in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Buner district, has officially filed nomination papers for a general seat in the upcoming Pakistan general elections. Running under the banner of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Parkash will follow in the footsteps of her father, Oam Parkash, a dedicated PPP member of 35 years who recently retired as a doctor.

Saveera Parkash, a 2022 graduate of Abbottabad International Medical College, has become the first woman from Buner to vie for a general seat, having submitted her nomination papers for PK-25 in the Buner district.

The Pakistan general elections are scheduled for February 8, against the backdrop of a political crisis unfolding in the country.

Currently serving as the general secretary of the PPP women’s wing in Buner, Parkash has expressed commitment to the welfare of her community and dedication to working towards the betterment of women. Notably, she has highlighted the historical neglect and suppression of women in the development sector and aims to address these issues if elected.

In an interview with Dawn, Parkash shared her aspirations to follow in her father’s footsteps, particularly in serving the underprivileged in the region. She submitted her nomination papers on December 23, expressing optimism that the senior leadership of the PPP would endorse her candidature.

With a background in medicine, Parkash underscored that her commitment to “serving humanity is in my blood.” Her motivation to become an elected legislator is rooted in firsthand experiences with poor management and helplessness in government hospitals during her medical career.

Saveera Parkash has received widespread support, including an endorsement from Imran Noshad Khan, a social media influencer from Buner. Khan commended Parkash for breaking stereotypes perpetuated by traditional patriarchy, highlighting the significance of a woman stepping forward to contest elections in a region where it has taken 55 years since Buner merged with Pakistan.

Recent amendments by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) now mandate a five percent inclusion of women candidates in general seats, as reported by Dawn. This move reflects a positive step towards enhancing gender representation in the political landscape of Pakistan.