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ISLAMABAD: Close to 46 million young voters are expected to play a pivotal role in determining the outcome of the general elections expected later this year.

Analysts believe the huge number of young voters — a majority of whom use social media — could not only influence the electorate using propaganda tools on online platforms, but even alter the electoral scene in several constituencies if they turn out in large numbers on election day.

Ramsha Jahangir
Ramsha Jahangir

According to age-wise data collated by official sources, exclusively available with Dawn, there are 17.44m voters between the ages 18 and 25; the number of voters between the ages 26 and 35 years is 28.99m; while there are 22.48m voters between the ages 36 and 45 years.

The voters in the age bracket between 18 years and 35 years are described as young voters.

This group in the age brackets of 18-25 and 26-35 forms 43.82pc of total voters

Of the 17.44m voters under 25 years old, 10.13m are in Punjab, 3.11m are in Sindh, 2.77m are in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), 0.774m are in Balochistan, 0.558m reside in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and 0.117m are from the federal capital.

Of the 28.99m voters between the ages 26 and 35 years, 16.09m are from Punjab, 6.17m are from Sindh, 4.49m hail from KP, 1.23m are in Balochistan, 0.776m hail from Fata and 0.208m are from the federal capital.

The breakdown of voters between the ages of 36 and 45 shows that 12.83m of them are from the Punjab, 5.13m hail from Sindh, 3m are from KP, 0.884m are from Balochistan, 0.466m are from Fata and 0.156m are from the federal capital.

There are 16.13m voters in the age group of 45-55 years, of which 9.38m hail from Punjab, 3.53m are from Sindh, 2.13m are from KP, 0.634m are from Balochistan, 0.325m are from Fata, and 0.119m voters are from the federal capital.

Of the 10.28m voters between ages 56 and 66 years, 6.30m are from the Punjab, 2.17m are from Sindh, 1.49m are from KP, 0.396m are from Balochistan, 0.218m hail from Fata, and 84,312 are from the federal capital.

As many as 10.61m voters in the country are over 66 years old, of whom 6.3m are from Punjab, 2.17m are from Sindh, 1.49m are from KP, 0.401m are from Balochistan, 0.165m are from Fata and 80,228 are from the federal capital.

In the electoral rolls prepared for the 2013 general polls, the total number of voters was 86.18m, of which 17.5m voters were under 25 years of age, while 24.2m voters were between 26 and 35 years old, 17.2m were between 36 and 45 years old, 12m voters were between 46 and 55 years old, 8.4m voters were in the age bracket of 56 to 65 years, while 6.7m voters were above 66 years of age.

Published in Dawn, May 25th, 2018