Following the surprise victory of Imran Khan's unregistered party, his supporters are protesting. Because they are not allowed to govern.

A crowd of people on a road.

Imran Khan supporters block Peshawar-Islamabad highway Photo: Fayaz Aziz/Reuters

MUMBAI taz | “Long live Pakistan” is one of her cries. In the port metropolis of Karachi, people gather in front of the Election Commission building. They protest outside locations in Pakistan where election results are suspected of being manipulated.

This is also the case in the metropolises of Lahore, Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Security forces sometimes suppress demonstrations with tear gas and batons. According to the media, there are dozens of supporters of the opposition party in the police. PTI (Pakistan Movement for Justice) arrested for violating the ban on gatherings.

Media workers were also said to have been mistreated, the Pakistani newspaper reported. Sunrise. On Monday there was a strike in the restive southwest of the country.

The unrest comes after the announcement of the results of the parliamentary elections, in which the military-backed group Muslim League (PML-N) Nawaz Sharif claimed victory, although candidates backed by ostracized and jailed former Prime Minister Imran Khan's PTI party emerged as the largest group, with more than 90 parliamentary seats. Khan's party claims the real number is as high as 150.

However, since they were not allowed to run as party members, but only as individual candidates, Nawaz Sharif's PML-N is considered the winner of the elections with its 75 seats. While the Muslim League and the PPP (Pakistan People's Party) With its 54 seats now meeting for coalition talks, Khan's supporters and other political parties are expressing their anger against the alleged manipulation.

Suspected electoral fraud

A meme is circulating in Pakistan saying that the Muslim League received more votes on February 9 than on February 8, that is, more votes the day after the elections than on the day of the elections, illustrating the widespread suspicion of electoral fraud during the counting. The elections are said to have been a “selection rather than an election.”

Therefore, PTI members are demanding the resignation of Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja. They accuse the electoral authority of having taken steps to deprive the candidates supported by the PTI of their mandate.

Despite the accusations, many see that the will of the people was demonstrated in the elections: “Pakistan voted for democracy, but healing and reconciliation are necessary for stability,” says Maleeha Lodhi, former ambassador of Pakistan. “However, neither party has won a majority, so neither party can form a government on its own.” Therefore, it remains a complicated situation.