ECP

ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Wednesday rescheduled by-polls in NA-75 (Sialkot-IV) Daska from March 18 to April 10 soon after the Supreme Court turned down plea of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s candidate seeking a stay order against the Commission decision of re-polling in the constituency. However, the bench issued notices to PML-N candidate Nausheen Iftikhar and other parties in the case and adjourned the hearing till March 16.
Making the ECP and his opponent candidate Nosheen Iftikhar of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and others as respondents in the matter Malhi urged the apex court to set aside order of the ECP that declared election in the constituency as void and ordered fresh poll on March 18, 2021.
Taking up the plea on Wednesday a three-member bench of the top court, led by Umar Ata Bandial observed that the ECP has authority to take action without receiving a formal application.
During the course of proceedings, counsel for the petitioner, Advocate Mohammad Shahzad Shaukat claimed the ECP has exceeded its authority by ordering re-poll in the constituency. He urged the top court to set aside the ECP decision till final adjudication in the matter.
However, Justice Umar Ata Bandial observed that adjudication of the case in hand can possibly be concluded before the polling day. He asked the petitioner counsel to deliver an argument over jurisdiction of the ECP in this matter.
The bench observed it will examine the PTI candidate’s plea seeking a stay order on the upcoming by-election in the constituency after examining all records and detailed order of March 08 of the ECP in the matter.
A member of the bench Justice Sajjad Ali Shah remarked that the ECP is competent to take action without receiving a formal application, however, the judge questioned on what grounds the ECP has decided re-election in the whole constituency. Responding to the court query, PML-N candidate Nausheen Iftikhar alleged as many as 23 presiding officers from the constituency were abducted during the election.
The bench sought information regarding the area where the firing incident took place in the constituency during the election where two persons were killed. Besides, the court also issued directives to the ECP to submit all records based on which the elections were declared illegal during the next date of hearing.
Later, the bench issued notices to PML-N candidate Nausheen Iftikhar and other parties in the case and adjourned the hearing till March 16. – TLTP