Imran Khan's PTI registers thumping win Punjab province polls, discusses govt formation
Pakistan News: Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party on Monday discussed the possibility of forming its government in Punjab province of Pakistan after its thumping victory in the by-elections.
PTI won 15 out of 20 provincial assembly seats in Sunday's by-elections, while Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) got just four seats. One seat was grabbed by an independent candidate.
These seats fell vacant after the Election Commission of Pakistan deseated 25 lawmakers of PTI after they defected to vote against the party candidate in the election for the chief minister.
Elections were held on just 20 seats as five candidates were indirectly elected on the reserved seats.
The results have changed the number game in the provincial assembly where PTI and its main ally the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) have a total 188 members and the PML-N and its allied have 179 lawmakers. The candidate for the chief minister needs 186 assembly members' support to be elected.
The Supreme Court already ordered fresh elections for the post of the Chief Minister soon after the by-election.
Earlier, PTI had supported Chaudhary Parvez Elahi of PMLQ as their joint candidate, who lost to Hamza Shehbaz, the son of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. The new tally showed that PTI and its ally were in a winning position.
However, it is being debated as to whether or not Elahi should be the joint candidate as PTI lawmakers are insisting that party supremo Khan nominates a party loyalist instead of supporting the PML-Q candidate -- as the party has just 10 seats in the assembly.
The PTI core committee meeting held on Monday, chaired by ousted prime minister Khan and attended by the senior leadership of the party, had a detailed consultation on the matters of formation of the government in Punjab.
Earlier on Monday, Khan and Elahi, who is also the Speaker of the Punjab Assembly, held a post-by-elections consultative telephonic conversation.
In another development, the PTI has asked Hamza to step down after losing majority in the assembly.
After losing Punjab to its nemesis PTI, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif would be confined to Islamabad, a highly unwelcome situation for his coalition government, as in the common parlance, he who controls Lahore, controls the country.
With the PTI ensconced in Lahore, it would be difficult for him to run the country smoothly.
The prime minister has already started discussing the political situation with chief allies, including Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F).
An important meeting of PML-N leaders is scheduled to be held on Tuesday in Lahore, according to information minister Marriyum Aurangzeb.
PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif, who is living in London, has also directed his party to hold a consultative meeting to discuss the defeat of PML-N in its home ground.
Meanwhile, PTI chief Khan, emboldened by the victory, has demanded early general elections.
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