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ISLAMABAD: By-elections on 11 general seats of the National Assembly will be held within the next two months, a senior official of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) told Dawn on Monday.

He said that while nine vacancies had been created by resignations of those who had won more than one seat, elections in NA-60 (Rawalpindi) had been put off due to disqualification of Pakistan Muslim League-N leader Hanif Abbasi days before polling and election in NA-103 (Faisalabad) had been postponed due to the death of a candidate.

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan, who had won five NA seats, has retained NA-95 (Mianwali) and vacated NA-35 (Bannu), NA-53 (Islamabad), NA-131 (Lahore) and NA-243 (Karachi).

PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif has retained NA-132 (Lahore) and quit PP-164 and PP-165 seats of the Punjab Assembly, while his son Hamza vacated NA-124 (Lahore) and retained PP-146 (Lahore).

Schedule for presidential election to be announced this week

Shahbaz Sharif will be the opposition’s joint candidate for the slot of prime minister against Imran Khan.

Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid leader Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi has quit NA-65 and NA-69 and retained PP-30. He will be the PTI-PML-Q joint candidate for the office of Punjab Assembly speaker.

Ghulam Sarwar Khan of the PTI, who defeated former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan from NA-59 (Rawalpindi) and NA-63 (Rawalpindi), has retained NA-59 and vacated NA-63.

Retired Major Tahir Sadiq, who won NA-55 and NA-56 (Attock), quit NA-56.

Ali Amin Khan Gandapur of the PTI, who defeated JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, retained NA-38 and vacated PK-97.

Pir Syed Fazal Ali Shah Jilani of the Pakistan Peoples Party retained NA-209 and quit PS-30.

Asad Qaiser, who is the joint candidate of the PTI and its allies for the slot of NA speaker, has retained NA-18 and quit PK-44.

Amir Haider Hoti of the Awami National Party retained NA-21 and vacated PK-53.

Meanwhile, an official of the ECP told Dawn that the schedule for presidential election would be announced soon after the electoral college was completed this week. The five-year term of President Mamnoon Hussain will end on Sept 9.

Under the Constitution, the election for the president’s office is to be conducted not earlier than two months and not later than one month before the expiry of the term.

In case the assemblies are dissolved, the election should take place within a month after the general elections. But sources in the ECP said it would not be possible to meet the demand of this constitutional provision.

He said the notification for establishment of election tribunals comprising serving judges of the high courts would also be issued in a few days.

Published in Dawn, August 14th, 2018