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How many seats needed to win election in Pakistan: Imran Khan

How many seats needed to win election in Pakistan: Imran Khan

Imran Khan’s supporters demonstrated in key cities across Pakistan as two rival parties held talks to form a government even though Khan loyalists won the most seats in Thursday’s polls.

Supporters of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party staged protests in the cities of Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar. The crowds numbered in the hundreds due to the heavy police presence, small when compared to previous demonstrations. Several were arrested.

PTI Chairman Gohar Ali Khan asked supporters to stage peaceful protests at election offices, saying polling was manipulated and the Election Commission of Pakistan should stop vote rigging — allegations it has denied. PTI supporters should now “exercise their constitutional, democratic and political right to peaceful protest to protect the mandate of the people,” he said in a post on X.

The protests up the tempo after an already contentious election, which saw Khan’s candidates, forced to run as independents, shock observers by clinching the most seats but falling short of a majority. The victory showed Pakistan’s young voters and the middle class were disillusioned with the status quo of political parties backed by the Sharif and Bhutto clans and voted in numbers for an alternative.

Analysts say the nation’s powerful military, which has clashed with Khan, is backing a government formed by the Nawaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s Pakistan Peoples Party. Sharif’s party failed to reach an agreement on forming a government with Bhutto Zardari’s group in initial talks Saturday but forged a working pact with a secular-based party known as Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan from the commercial capital of Karachi.

The independents’ strong performance points to Khan’s enduring popularity among the nation’s 129 million registered voters, many of whom are struggling to make ends meet amid the fastest inflation in Asia. 

“If the military establishment and the rest of politicians join hands and refuse the transfer of power then the anger will boil over to the streets,” said Sarwar Bari, Islamabad-based political analyst and former head of Free and Fair Election Network. “The majority is with the PTI despite all the odds.”

There were reports of service on X, formerly known as Twitter, being suspended on Saturday with internet governance watchdog NetBlocks saying it was a nationwide disruption. Police in Islamabad, the country’s…

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