RAWALPINDI (Channel News) – On Saturday, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, chairman of the Awami Muslim League (AML) and former interior minister, formally inaugurated his election campaign for the NA-56 constituency from Lal Haveli.

“The electoral symbol of ‘pen and inkpot’ will win with a thumping majority on February 8,” Rashid said, gesturing to his followers from inside a roofless truck that emerged from the Lal Haveli.

Rashid, who was wearing a white turban, expressed confidence that voters who wanted to vote on principles would undoubtedly choose the Awami Muslim League.

In a statement published here, the former minister expressed concern about his ally, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, which has filed candidates against him and his nephew, Sheikh Rashid Shaique.

“The people for whom I went on a 40-day ‘chilla’ [seclusion] have brought election candidate against me… but still I am not annoyed with them,” Rashid said. He went on to say that “it is him who has suffered more after the PTI founder” .

He stated that, despite the fact that 15 charges had been filed against him [after the May 9 events], he was not upset with anyone. “I do not have any quarrels with anyone either,” he said.

Rashid stated that his nephew, Sheikh Rashid Shaique, will commence his electoral campaign from NA-57.