In the most anticipated standoff between political contenders for power in Pakistan, it was the people of Pakistan, who used their right of choice through vote on July 25, 2018 marking Pakistan’s Election Day.
Over 105 million eligible voters got a shot at selecting their leaders in their respective provinces and the National Assembly.
As many as 12,570 candidates are contesting for a total of 849 seats of the national and the provincial assembly.
Massive appointment of electoral staff and law-enforcing agencies was witnessed in 2018 elections.
At least 1.6 million electoral staff performed duties in the polling stations, while at least 449,465 policemen, 800,000 law enforcement and army personals discharged duties for ensuring security on July 25.
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) also formulated special security measures for at least 17,007 polling stations, declared as "highly sensitive".
At least 85,307 polling stations were set up across Pakistan.
The voting day had a slow start but gained momentum as polling stations were flocked by voters.
Imran Khan, the chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is being seen as the favorite to win the elections.
However, among the top three competing parties, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Pakistan Muslim League — Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People Party (PPP), two parties raised serious reservations and concerns over the overall process of voting, accusing that a coordinated rigging was being done by electoral staff, security forces and levies to manipulate the ballots in favor of Imran Khan.
In a letter written to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), PML-N and PPP accused the electoral staff, primarily at female polling stations, for opting to blatant rigging and tampering ballot papers in favour of PTI head Imran Khan.
The polls were also affected by the devastating blast in Quetta, which claimed lives of at least 32 locals including two young children.
Top political leaders along with leaders of prescribed outfits also casted their votes.
Shahbaz Sharif, Bilawal Bhutto, Asif Ali Zardari, Imran Khan and other prominent leader casted their votes from their respective constituencies.
Among the prescribed leaders, Hafiz Saeed, Abdul Rehman Makki and Saifullah Khalid also cast their votes.
However, Imran Khan has been declared as the frontline runner to taking control of Pakistan’s as per public polls.
As per poll conducted by Gallup Pakistan based on data from five separate polls, forecasts and predictions indicate that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is more likely to emerge as the largest part on the national level.
However, the research organisation concluded that the 12 per cent undecided voters may tilt the balance of the election in Punjab, the country's largest province, thus ultimately determining the fate of the next federal government.
According to reports from Pakistan, Imran Khan’s PTI has been leading on 119 seats followed by Shahbaz Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) on 61 and 40 seats, respectively.