Karachi: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif still commands considerable public support, even as he faces a mounting challenge from the opposition, which is seeking a change in the system.

A survey conducted by the Pew Research Centre showed Sharif enjoying 64 percent popularity, which is a marginal drop of two percent from May 2013 when he won the general elections, The Express Tribune reports.

Pakistan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan, who has been gunning for Sharif’s exit, has a popularity rating of 53 percent.

The survey also found a jump among the people’s mood surrounding the current political and economic situation in the country.

At least 37 percent are optimistic about the economy, while a whopping 87 percent believe the army retains a powerful influence on the nation and its policies.
Fifty-one percent Pakistanis still view India negatively and perceive it to be their biggest threat.  The United States and its President Barrack Obama continue to draw unfavourable public ratings in Pakistan.

The latest survey is based on face-to-face interviews with 1203 respondents from April 15 to May 7 this year.

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