Lahore: Cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan on Sunday formally kicked off his campaign for next month`s General Election by offering prayers at the shrine of Sufi saint Ali Hajvari for the success of his party Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf.
Khan led a huge rally from the Mall, one of Lahore`s main thoroughfares, to the Data Darbar shrine.
A charged crowd, consisting mostly of youths, shouted slogans like "The lion hunter has come".
The lion is the election symbol of the PML-N led by former premier Nawaz Sharif, which is seen as the main rival of Khan`s party in Punjab, the country`s most populous and politically crucial province.
A special truck was prepared for Khan to lead the rally.
Khan also opened an election office on the Mall, which is part of a parliamentary constituency from where he is contesting the May 11 general election.
Other candidates of the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf also joined the rally and urged Khan to address more meetings in Punjab.
PML-N chief Sharif, who is also contesting from a parliamentary seat in Lahore, kicked off his party`s election campaign in Kasur, 40 km from Lahore.
Addressing a large gathering, Sharif held President Asif Ali Zardari, the head of the Pakistan People`s Party that led the last government, responsible for all the problems that Pakistan is facing.