Although the Pakistan election battle is set to come down to three parties, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), statistics reveal that independent candidates outnumber the candidates fielded by political parties.
In all, 11,673 candidates are in the run, 3,428 for National Assembly and 8,245 for provincial assembly seats.
The number of candidates fielded by parties is 5,661 while the number of independent candidates in the race is 6,012.
For National Assembly seats, 1,623 candidates are in the race, 1,805 of them fielded by political parties and 1,623 independents. Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa is the only province where the number of independent candidates for National Assembly seats is higher than those fielded by parties.
For National Assembly seats, parties have fielded 820 candidates in Punjab, 441 in Sindh, 335 in KP, 173 in Balochistan and 36 in the federal capital. The number of independent candidates for National Assembly seats includes 714 from Punjab, 373 from Sindh, 386 from KP, 117 from Balochistan and 33 from the federal capital.
For provincial assembly seats, 8,245 candidates are in the running -- 3,856 fielded by parties and 4,389 contesting independently.
The number of independent candidates running for the Punjab and Sindh assemblies is higher than party ticket holders.
As many as 2,256 independents and 1,719 party ticket holders are contesting Punjab Assembly seats while 1,186 independents and 993 party candidates are in the run for Sindh Assembly seats. In KP and Balochistan there are 675 and 469 party ticket holders and 470 and 477 independents, respectively.
Of the 120 parties enlisted with the ECP, 95 are contesting elections and seven of these 95 parties have failed to meet the mandatory requirement of awarding five per cent party tickets for general seats to women.