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Massive protests in Pakistan after Hamza Shehbaz takes oath as Punjab CM

Peshawar: After the "surprising" victory of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Hamza Shahbaz as the Chief Minister of Punjab province, former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan's supporters staged a protest outside the headquarters of the Peshawar Corps Commander and chanted slogans "Hum Leke Rahenge Azadi".
Protesting the outcome of the Punjab CM election, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) supporters are demonstrating in all major cities including Karachi, Lahore, and Islamabad after Punjab Assembly's Deputy Speaker Dost Muhammad Mazari rejected PML-Q votes in the Punjab CM election voting. Hamza Shehbaz on Saturday took oath as Punjab Chief Minister. He was administered oath today by Punjab Governor Balighur Rehman at a ceremony held at the Governor House in Punjab, the Dawn newspaper reported.
Hamza Shehbaz retained the seat after PML-Q leader Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain sent a letter to the Deputy Speaker telling him that he had instructed his MPAs to vote for the younger Sharif instead of Pervez Elahi.
The PTI had approached the Supreme Court against the Deputy Speaker's ruling and expressed the hope that it would emerge victorious. PTI Chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan called for protests against the outcomes of the elections.
"I am 72 years old but I go to every meeting, whoever is honest will be with Imran Khan. I am deeply disappointed with what happened today in Punjab. People's mandate was robbed. These people will eat their mouths," said an elderly woman who participated in Karachi's Shahrah-e-Faisal protest.
"Salutations to you Karachi people, it is impossible to defeat your determination. I told the leadership in Lahore that there are thousands of people who are determined to go to CM House and Bilal House. Patalgah, my application has been approved for hearing. We will give our next action plan tomorrow. President PTI Karachi," tweeted PTI Karachi.
Earlier, PML-N leader Hamza Shahbaz was re-elected as the chief minister (CM) of Punjab. Pervaiz Elahi - joint candidate of PTI and PML-Q - received 186 votes, while Hamza Shahbaz got 179 votes.
However, 10 votes of PML-Q were canceled by Deputy Speaker Dost Muhammad Mazari, hence taking the figure to 176. Following the counting of votes, the deputy speaker, citing Article 63A of the Constitution, rejected ten votes cast by the PML-Q members. As a result, Hamza received 179 votes, while Elahi managed to bag 176 votes.
Notably, the Supreme Court in its decision on a presidential reference seeking interpretation of Article 63-A of the Constitution which is related to the status of defecting lawmakers, said the votes of defecting lawmakers will not be counted.
PTI supporters are protesting across Pakistan against Mazari's ruling on CM Punjab poll. Nationwide protests happening right now in - Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta, Multan, Gujrat, DG Khan, Faislabad, Sialkot, Gujranwala, Sukkur, Layyah, Larkana and Hyderabad.
"People are protesting at these places all over the country. Get out for the sake of Pakistan!" tweeted PTI. PTI also slammed Asif Zardari, Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP) leader and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.
The PTI thanked people for supporting them. "Shukriya Pakistan, InshAllah we will defeat the mafia once again... remember no one can defeat a zinda qoum!" Protests are taking place in all the small and big cities of the country. (ANI)

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