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Business & Finance

PSX benchmark Index bleeds after ‘shocking’ upset at Senate Elections

  • At 9:30 am, the index dropped by 1,073.15 points to 45,087.73 points amid political uncertainty.
  • The political tensions were further escalated after PTI announced that Prime Minister Imran Khan would seek a fresh vote of confidence from the National Assembly.
Updated 04 Mar 2021

The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) benchmark KSE-100 Index fall by over 1,000 points in the opening session on Thursday.

At 9:30 am, the index dropped by 1,073.15 points to 45,087.73 points amid political uncertainty.

The development comes a day after the sitting finance minister Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh lost to former Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani at the Senate election.

"Be ready for market fall tomorrow," tweeted Topline Securities analyst Mohammad Sohail, on Wednesday after Hafeez lost the Senate election.

In a crushing disappointment to the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), the joint candidate of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) and former prime minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani, on Wednesday, emerged victorious by defeating his rival Dr. Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, the federal finance minister, by five votes – 169/164 as seven votes were rejected under highly suspicious circumstances – in Senate elections.

The “surprise victory” by the PDM candidate who defeated Dr. Sheikh came as a “shock” to the ruling PTI as Fauzia Arshad – the PTI candidate from Islamabad on seats reserved for women – stole the show with 174 votes, defeating Farzana Kausar of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) who bagged 161 votes.

The political tensions were further escalated after PTI announced that Prime Minister Imran Khan would seek a fresh vote of confidence from the National Assembly, following the upset defeat of his candidate from the federal capital, Abdul Hafeez Shaikh.

Speaking at a news conference soon after the results of the Senate elections, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi flanked by other government ministers, including Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood, Minster for Planning and Development Asad Umar, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry, said “Prime Minister Imran Khan has taken a moral position, so he has decided to seek a vote of confidence from the House, after consultation with other PTI members.”

He added that the decision was taken with a view to making it clear “as to who is standing with Imran Khan’s ideology and who is not.”