Pakistan headed towards hung assembly (Third Lead)

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Islamabad, July 26 (IANS) Pakistan seemed heading for a hung National Assembly late on Wednesday, as the leads from counting centres showed no party getting a clear-cut majority, though it put Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) ahead of the rest, including Nawaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

According to the projections around midnight, the PTI was leading in 110 seats, PML-N in 69 and the Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari-led Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) trailed at number three with 38 seats.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf, from its official Twitter handle, tweeted that the party is “heading right towards Naya Pakistan”.

According to PTV news, Imran Khan has maintained a massive lead over PML-N’s Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in Islamabad constituency. The PTI chief was pitted against former Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in the crucial National Assembly seat.

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The voter turnout was recorded at 50-55 per cent of the nearly 106 million electorate, similar to the previous electoral contest in 2013.

Television visuals showed election workers sorting through massive piles of paper ballots at polling stations across the country.

In all likelihood, the contest seemed heading for a two-party battle between Khan’s PTI and the incumbent PML-N of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, whose brother Shehbaz is leading its campaign.

As many as 12,570 candidates were in electoral fray for a total of 849 seats of national and provincial assemblies in the country’s 11th general election.

–IANS

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