PML-N Secures Majority in Key Pakistan By-Elections

PML-N wins big in Pakistan by-elections, strengthening its position as the dominant political force. The victory is seen as a setback for PTI and a validation of the incumbent government's policies.

Rizwan Shah
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PML-N Secures Majority in Key Pakistan By-Elections

PML-N Secures Majority in Key Pakistan By-Elections

The ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party emerged victorious in key by-elections held on Sunday, securing at least two National Assembly seats and 10 provincial Assembly seats, according to unofficial results.

The by-elections were conducted across 21 National and provincial assembly seats amidst tight security and suspension of cellular and internet services in specific districts.

Major political parties, including PML-N, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-backed Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), participated in the by-polls, while Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl boycotted the elections. PML-N won two National Assembly seats, while one seat each was won by PPP, SIC, and an independent candidate. In the provincial assemblies, PML-N won 10 out of 16 seats, including 9 from Punjab and 1 from Balochistan.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif congratulated the newly elected members, stating that the PML-N's victory is a manifestation of the people's trust and that the economic improvement and relief to the people have had a positive effect on public opinion. "The results are a clear rejection of PTI's false narrative," claimed Federal Information Minister Attaullah Tarar, referring to the party's founder Imran Khan, who is currently incarcerated.

Why this matters: The by-election results strengthen the PML-N's position as the dominant political force in Pakistan. The victory is seen as a significant setback for PTI and a validation of the incumbent government's policies amidst political tensions in the country.

The by-elections were held to fill the seats vacated by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz, and other candidates who had won more than one seat in the general elections held on February 8. Notable PML-N victories include Adnan Afzal Chattha's win over PTI's Fayyaz Chattha in the PP-36 Wazirabad seat, and Rashid Minhas' victory in the PP-164 Lahore seat, previously held by PM Shehbaz Sharif. The by-elections were marred by sporadic violence, with at least one PML-N supporter killed in a clash with PTI voters in Narowal, leading to the polling being stopped in that constituency.

Key Takeaways

  • PML-N won 2 NA seats, 10 provincial seats in Pakistan by-elections.
  • PTI-backed SIC, PPP also won seats, while JUI-F boycotted the polls.
  • PM Shehbaz hailed PML-N's victory as a mandate, rejecting PTI's "false narrative".
  • By-elections were held to fill seats vacated by PM, CM in Feb polls.
  • By-polls marred by violence, with 1 PML-N supporter killed in clashes.