Imran Khan’s party launches agitation against ‘rigging’ in Pakistan polls

ISLAMABAD: Declaring that it would form the government both at the Centre as well as in Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa provinces, Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf party on Saturday asked the election commission to announce complete results by midnight or face protests in areas where results were still awaited.However, within hours of issuing this statement, party workers at Peshawar and Karachi embarked on loud protests complete with sloganeering and waving of party flags.Springing a surprise, independents backed by jailed former prime minister Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party won the lion’s share of 101 seats in the National Assembly in Thursday’s election.Two days after the polling was held, the results were not yet complete and the country appeared headed to a hung Parliament or a coalition government.Addressing a press conference, PTI chief Gohar Ali Khan demanded that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) announce complete results by midnight or face protests by his supporters in areas where results were still awaited and said, otherwise “PTI supporters will stage peaceful protests outside offices of returning officers (ROs).”He also accused the ECP of failing to play its constitutional role to announce results on time.Hours after announcing the move, party workers at many seats embarked on loud protests in front of the respective RO offices.”“Protest Alert Peshawar! Huge protest in Peshawar against rigging & manipulation on NA28 & numerous other provincial seats of the city!,”” PTI’s official ‘PTI Politics Update’ X handle posted along with a video from the site.It posted similar videos from Sialkot, Karachi and Balochistan.

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