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Hindu woman elected to Pakistan’s Senate, a historic first

ISLAMABAD — A woman from Pakistan’s Hindu minority has been elected to the Senate for the first time ever. A Taliban-linked cleric was defeated in the election.

Krishna Kumari, of the Pakistan People’s Party, hails from the lowest rung of the caste system. Lawmakers in national and four provincial assemblies on Saturday elected half of the 104-member Senate to six-year terms.

Deposed premier Nawaz Sharif’s party holds a plurality of 33 seats in the upper house of Parliament after winning 15 in Saturday’s elections. Former president Asif Zardari’s party came in second, followed by the party led by former cricket star Imran Khan. Khan’s party supported Maulana Samiul Haq, a mentor to Taliban leaders, but he fell short.

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Kumari, who worked in fields as a child, will take the oath of office alongside some of the biggest landowners in the country.

Associated Press