Photo: PTI video screen grab.

Islamabad: Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party won a vice election in Punjab, the country’s most populous state, and is likely to form a new state government in the coming weeks, officials said on Monday. Stated.

Khan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf party won 15 of the 20 seats won by the 371 state legislature in a long-awaited vote on Sunday. This brings the total number of seats held by the Khan Party and its allies to the Punjab Chamber of Commerce to 188, two more than the simple majority of 186 seats required to govern the state.

Khan’s victory does not threaten Islamabad’s government, but it does hurt Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s ruling coalition. Sharif came to power in April after Khan was banished by a vote of no confidence in parliament. The Pakistan Muslim League of Sharif used to have a majority in Punjab.

On Friday, the Punjab Legislature will elect a new prime minister, head of government, to replace Sharif’s son, Hamza Shabaz, who currently holds the post.

Pakistan’s election committee ordered a by-election last month after disqualifying 20 members of the Khan Party from the Punjab constituency. According to preliminary results released on Monday, Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League won four seats, as did one independent candidate.

Kahn claimed that his expulsion was a US conspiracy, a crime denied by both Sharif and Washington, and demanded a new parliamentary election. Sharif refused to accept the challenge, saying the next election would be in 2023.

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