Pakistan election results: Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-E-Insaaf or PTI has established a huge lead
New Delhi: Pakistan's cricketer-politician Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has emerged as the single largest party in the National Assembly amid allegations of rigging with army backing. Before the results were announced, Mr Khan addressed the nation in a victory speech from Islamabad, outlining the goals of the government he will be heading. The PTI is heading to win 119 of the 272 seats in the National Assembly. Its closest rival, jailed former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz or PML-N is expected to win 63. A party needs 137 seats for a majority. The results will be announced tomorrow.
Here is your 10-point cheatsheet to Pakistan general elections 2018:
"This is my chance to fulfill my dreams for Pakistan," Imran Khan said. Then, during a half-hour speech, he indicated that Pakistan is wants good relations with India, with a focus on trade. But there was one stumbling block - Kashmir. "I really want to fix our ties, you take one step forward, we will take two," he said.
Union minister RK Singh said, "Imran will only say what the military wants him to say... so it doesn't make our job easier," as the military, he said, shows no signs of curbing terroris
Though Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-E-Insaaf or PTI has established a huge lead, it is still short of the majority mark of 137 and may have to look for allies among the smaller parties and independents. The party's supporters have already hit the streets to celebrate the single largest party status.
With counting taking place in fits and starts through the night, five parties alleged blatant rigging. Shahbaz Sharif, the brother of jailed former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, called this the "dirtiest election" he has ever seen. The Election Commission attributed the delay to technical troubles.
Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP) led by led by Bilawal Bhutto, the son of assassinated two-time Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, won 18 seats and its candidates were leading in 19 seats.
Pakistan's National Assembly has 342 members, of which 272 are directly elected. The rest are reserved for women and religious minorities, who are selected through proportional representation. A party can form the government if it gets 172 seats in total. A single party will need at least 137 of the directly elected seats to form the government.
Pakistan went to polls yesterday in a rare democratic transition of power in its coup-studded history. It was the second civilian transfer of power. The army, which ruled the nuclear-armed nation for most of the last 70 years, still sets its security and foreign policy.
The elections, however, took place under allegations of manipulation by the army and concerns over participation of terrorist and radical groups. There was a total blackout of information as no Indian or foreign journalist were given visa to cover the elections.
An unprecedented 460 candidates from terrorist and radical groups are in the fray, which has raised concerns in India. The leading among them are candidates from Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed-led banned outfit Jamat-ud Dawa. Saeed's son and son-in-law are contesting the elections.
The frequent stops as the counting progressed through the night has the parties up in arms. "This is a horrible situation which I have never seen in my 30-year political career. These were the dirtiest polls in Pakistan's history," Shahbaz Sharif said. An Election Commission official said the final results had been delayed by technical failures.