May 12 - Supporters of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif celebrate his election comeback, as supporters of Imran Khan stage protest. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Supporters of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif held a rally late on Sunday to celebrate his victory in Pakistan's national elections. Toppled in a 1999 military coup, jailed and exiled, Sharif has made a triumphant election comeback and looks set to form a stable government capable of implementing reforms needed to rescue the fragile economy. Sharif may not win enough seats to rule on his own but has built up enough momentum to avoid having to form a coalition with his main rivals, former cricketer Imran Khan's Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) and the Pakistan People's Party (PPP). The elections, held on Saturday (May 11), were marred by a campaign by Islamic fundamentalists to block the voting. Despite pre-poll violence and attacks that killed at least 40 people, voter turnout was a robust 60 percent. Meanwhile, supporters of Pakistani politician and former cricketer Imran Khan staged a protest rally in Lahore against alleged rigging in the parliamentary polls. In a video message, Khan said the election would boost Pakistan's young democracy, but added his party was collecting evidence of what he said was vote-rigging. Khan said he intended to investigate it officially. The former cricket star put up a strong fight and is likely to remain a force in politics, possibly becoming the main opposition figure. The PPP, which led the government for the last five years, has done badly and could only come in third place.