As the PML-N party emerged victorious on Friday in elections in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said he hoped Jammu and Kashmir would soon become part of Pakistan.
Speaking at a rally in PoK capital Muzaffarabad, Sharif told his supporters: "The day is not far when Jammu and Kashmir will become Pakistan. No one can stop the freedom movement in occupied Kashmir."
The PML-N has won more than a dozen of the 41 seats being contested in the legislative assembly. Unofficial results suggested the party will eventually have a two-thirds majority in the assembly. The polls were held on Thursday.
The All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference (AJKMC) and Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) shared the second spot, grabbing two seats apiece.
Elections to the 49-member legislative assembly were held in PoK and different parts of the country where refugees from Jammu and Kashmir live, including Karachi, Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Islamabad, Lahore, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Narowal, Gujrat and Multan. Forty-one seats are directly elected while the remaining seats have nominated members.
Sharif expressed gratitude to the people for giving his party a majority. He said those who want to launch a movement against his government should first check their popularity among voters.
This was seen as a reference to threats by Pakistan People’s Party leader Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Imran Khan that they would launch a popular movement against the PML-N if Sharif did not come clean on his children figuring in the Panama leaks scandal.
Promising rapid progress in PoK, Nawaz said a network of motorways, roads and highways would be built in the region over the next five years.