Pakistan Elections results UPDATES; Imran Khan inches to PM Post

Pakistan Elections results UPDATES; Imran Khan inches to PM Post

Pakistan Elections results UPDATES; Imran Khan inches to PM Post

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is leading in 55 seats, while Pakistan People's Party (PPP) has taken lead in 34 out of a total of 272 seats.

"We completely reject this result, completely", said Shehbaz Sharif, leader of the incumbent PML-N party, at a late night press conference in Lahore.

A Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) worker was killed and two others injured as party activists clashed with Awami National Party (ANP) workers outside a polling station in Nawan Kali in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, according to Express News.

Even then, he announced "unofficial" and unconfirmed results of a Punjab Assembly constituency, PP-11, where PTI's Chuadhry Adnan beat the PML-N candidate, securing 43,079 votes.

Violence gripped Pakistan on election day after several election-related incidents, including the suicide blast in Quetta. Full results are expected later in the morning.

A third party, the Pakistan Peoples Party headed by Bilawal Bhutto Zardari - son of slain prime minister Benazir Bhutto - could be called upon to form a coalition with any victor.

Punjab province, the country's most populous, holds 141 of the country's 272 directly elected seats, and the key to forming the government.

The election has been marred by widespread allegations of pre-poll meddling by the powerful military in favor of Khan, which saw the process dubbed Pakistan's "dirtiest election".

About 800,000 security personnel and 370,000 army soldiers are watching over election day to ensure a free, fair and transparent vote for the people of Pakistan.

"This is the most important election in Pakistan's history", Mr Khan, 65, said after casting his vote in the capital Islamabad.

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Counting has started at the end of Wednesday's elections in Pakistan.

The poll outcome could result in a weak coalition government especially at a time when Pakistan urgently needs to address a foreign currency crisis and may also need to approach the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a second bailout in almost five years.

Pakistanis on Wednesday voted in a tense election as at least 35 people lose their lives in an ISIS suicide attack and poll-related violence, amidst charges of manipulation by the country's Army and concerns over the participation of Islamic hardliners, including Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed. However, 400 foreign observers from different countries will also monitor Pakistan Election 2018. PML-N's Amir Muqam is leading in NA-29 constituency.

Supporters of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) political party celebrate in Karachi.

The Americans will be particularly concerned about the outcome of the election, given that Khan famously said he would order the Pakistani military to shoot down American drones if he came to power, and advocated negotiations with Pakistani Taliban fighters rather than military operations against them.

He said that in case any proof is brought forward, action will be taken against all individuals found involved. Nevertheless, the party is a strong contender in the elections and has an even stronger candidate in Shahbaz Sharif to cause an upset.

The flagship BBC2 news programme opened with a piece documenting Khan's journey from a cricketing hero to a potential prime minister.

Ahead of the elections, the PML-N complained of a targeted crackdown by the security establishment, with the alleged help of the courts, in favour of the PTI party.

Some of those candidates belong to a new, rapidly growing anti-blasphemy movement, and others are from political groups that have been officially banned because of extremist ideologies or links to groups with violent histories.

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