Imran Khan has started reaching out to leaders of different political parties and independent candidates to form the next government in Pakistan after his party won a majority of seats in Parliament, according to his party officials.
Khan led his Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party to victory in the parliamentary elections this week, amid a growing consensus among South Asia experts and Pakistan-observers that it was greatly influenced and meddled by the strong Pakistani Army.
The PTI has so far bagged 115 of the 270 National Assembly seats on which elections were held, according to the Election Commission of Pakistan which has released results on 267 seats.
Pakistan's NA - the lower house of Parliament - comprises a total of 342 members, of which 272 are directly elected. A party can only form the government if it manages to secure 172 seats in total.
Jailed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz with 64 and former president Asif Ali Zardari's Pakistan Peoples Party with 43 seats are placed at number two and three respectively. Independent candidates have won 13 seats.
Khan yesterday met Saudi ambassador Nawaf Saeed Ahmad al-Malilki in Islamabad. The two discussed bilateral relations and agreed to further deepen the ties during the tenure of the PTI government.
According to PTI sources, Khan has consulted his party leaders about the federal cabinet and formation of government in Punjab where PML-N is also in the race.
Khan's confidante Jehangir Khan Tarin, who has been tasked to contact independent candidates, talked with Muttahidda Qaumi Movement Pakistan leader Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui who later refused to attend a multi-party meeting which rejected the election results.