It is generally believed that Pakistan has four provinces, Punjab, Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP). However, if we take a closer look at the state of affairs prevalent in the country, we can say with considerable certainty that Pakistan is dominated by one of its provinces. When we compare Punjab with the other three provinces, we can clearly find a huge difference, and the same can be said when you talk about the 36 districts of Punjab. The province is dominated by Lahore, and the people of this city control the progress and development taking place across the region. This same discrimination could be found when political parties nominated their candidates for the reserved seats in the province. Punjab is the most populous province, with an estimated population of 110,012,442 as per the 2017 Census, while the current population of Lahore is 11,126,285, about ten percent of Punjab’s total population. However, the quota of reserved seats given to Lahore exceeds 60 percent.This is absolutely ridiculous that all National Parties ignored the rest of Punjab in such a way, especially the party that claims to be fighting for a ‘Naya Pakistan’.Problems such as illiteracy, poverty and unemployment are mostly seen in South Punjab and other surrounding districts, in comparison to Lahore. The city is more developed than any other district in the province of Punjab. The women living here are also more empowered than their counterparts across the province, and all the developments made in this regard also seem to be focused on the region’s major cities, primarily Lahore. This is why it is so disappointing to learn that nothing was done for the women of Chak 1119-L and Chak 295-JB Devidas Pura of the Sahiwal and Toba TeK Singh regions, who were not allowed to vote by village elders.Additionally, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz ignored the other districts of Punjab by nominating 60 percent of the women from Lahore only. PML-N nominated 21 out of 30 women while PTI nominated 17 out of 33 women from Lahore who became members of Punjab assembly through reserved seats. Similarly, one of the two seats reserved seats for women by Pakistan Muslim League-Q is also from Lahore. The current population of Lahore is 11,126,285, about ten percent of Punjab’s total population. However, the quota of reserved seats given to Lahore exceeds 60 percentThe Election Commission of Pakistan has fixed the quota for reserved seats for women and minorities in provincial and national assemblies. According to the Election Commission, this move will ensure that for every 4.5 general seat, there will be one for women, while for every 27 general seats there will be one reserved for minorities.The notifications have also been issued for 66 women and eight minority members in Punjab, 29 women and nine minority members in Sindh, 22 women and three minority members in KP and 11 women and three minority members in Balochistan.The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) issued a list, allocating reserved seats for women and minorities to political parties according to their total tally in the Provincial Assembly of Punjab, and the list is dominated by women belonging to Lahore.According to the ECP’s notification, 39 women out of 66 reserved seats and 4 minority members out eight belong to Lahore in the Punjab Assembly.PTI nominated 33 women and four minority seats in Punjab, out of their total 179 seats while on the other hand, PML-N got 164 seats, with 130 general seats, 30 for women and four minority seats.It is clear to see that these reserved seats seem to be helping a small minority of people in Punjab, rather than empowering disenfranchised communities in the rest of the province. Hopefully the situation can be improved in the coming years, so that more powers are vested to the people for whom these reserved seats were originally designed for.The writer works as a regional Accounts Officer in the development sector and as a freelance journalistPublished in Daily Times, September 3rd 2018.