Former foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar. — Photo by AP/File

MUZAFFARGARH: The Returning Officer on Saturday asked former foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar to produce her marriage certificate during the scrutiny of her nomination papers in Kot Addu for the NA-177 seat.

Returning Officer Abdur Rehman Bodla asked Khar to produce her 'nikahnama' while examining her nomination papers in which the former minister had declared that her husband Feroz Gulzar had liabilities of Rs 35 million.

Khar has agreed to provide the said document. However, bizarre questioning by ROs during the scrutiny of nomination papers throughout the country has come under severe criticism.

Khar is contesting for a National Assembly seat in Kot Addu on a Pakistan Peoples Party ticket. On Saturday, she appeared before the RO for a hearing regarding objections on her nomination. After a brief hearing, the RO reserved his decision which will be announced on Sunday, the last date of nomination papers’ scrutiny.

This follows the Election Commission of Pakistan’s directive to the ROs to refrain from ‘irrelevant’ quizzing of candidates.

The nature of questions being asked by returning officers has attracted severe criticism from media, rights activists and political parties.

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Comments (29)

April 6, 2013 10:11 am
Other than Khar being asked to show her nikkahnama what were other instances of irrelevant questioning?
April 6, 2013 10:23 am
My 'nikah-nama' shows a liability of Rs32 only.
April 6, 2013 10:28 am
Is a male candidate also obliged to produce a "nikahnama"? Please consider it as an innocent question from a male Pakistani (not a PPP-Voter) living outside Pakistan for a long long time. It seems to me that Pakistani society has gone back in time in all these years.
April 6, 2013 10:41 am
Are you Foreign Minister? - I presume no. So don´t worry, be happy.
April 6, 2013 10:43 am
These ROs are perhaps trigger happy, in Ms. Khar's case they wanted to see her in person because she a smart cookie. Her services should be utilized across party lines by the next government. Young people like her are the life blood of the new and emerging Pakistan.
April 6, 2013 10:45 am
this shows how competent our lower judiciary is ....
April 6, 2013 10:58 am
If your Wife has Outstanding Liabilities of 35 million you will even be asked for more documents and then penalized. However in this case it will be a topi drama and they will clear them with no objections.
Zafar Iqbal
April 6, 2013 11:06 am
There is a very rare source of entertainment in Pakistan.However the "irrelevant " question to the candidates and their answer to RO entertained us too much.
April 6, 2013 11:13 am
At least your Nika Nama shows the liability of 32 rupees but are the liability to this nation. If that is the legal requirement whether it is right or wrong is the requirement then so be it.
April 6, 2013 11:27 am
The mullahs need to be restricted to mosques and should not be allowed to have any say in government and politics.
April 6, 2013 11:36 am
I have a Nikhanama of nil liability; having paid the Maher in advance ( I was conned)
April 6, 2013 11:43 am
For once, the question seems fair. The candidates have to give all liabilities of close family (spouse and children) and nikahnama as well as bayforms are part of the supporting documentation. While this is not supposed to be excusing the frankly ridculous questioning that the RO's have done, in this case they actually have a point.
Ali Sher
April 6, 2013 11:47 am
I think every one of these politicians should be scrutinized properly as most of them are corrupt. But it should be done with all of them without being biased.
April 6, 2013 12:01 pm
ROs have not been adquately trained and as a result of media scrunity, they began to crumble. These overzealous ROs, mis-directed thmselves by engaging in pursuant of cheap publicity by questioning religeous knowledge of the candidates.
Hasnain Haque
April 6, 2013 12:01 pm
MBA you are right. I live abroad too and when you look in it is embarrassing to see the practices from the dark ages in Pakistan. I would prefer if the RO asked, have you ever taken a Bribe, have you ever committed a crime, have you ever done anything unlawful but the problem is if they did that then 98% of Pakistanis would be disqualified.
April 6, 2013 12:09 pm
Looks like even living abroad cannot change mindset and we have the habit of questing everything. and degrading poor Pakistan. we do not know the context of why the nikahnama was asked, so why just believe an amateur reporter? as muslims you have a book that always go with some context to everything said in it. Develop to use your own brain and think. Do not just believe what media says.
April 6, 2013 12:10 pm
These Ignorant and puppet ROs should be removed immediately to Save the Country and make elections as per schedule. This is a conspiracy to create Tensions. It is the Job of NADRA to check for Marraige Certificate and Issue the CNIC. Who has instructed the RO to Insult People ??????? Who is Behind all this Non-Sense ???????
Imraan Mehmood
April 6, 2013 12:36 pm
Not funny !!!
April 6, 2013 12:55 pm
I don't understand the liability of Rs3.5 million of her husband; is that 'haq mahar' or he owes money to others?
April 6, 2013 1:22 pm
It seem like even God can not save Pakistan from ignorance. It is running toward dark age with speed of light.
Shahid Khan
April 6, 2013 2:34 pm
I don't consider questions about religion irrelevant. Yes asking about. How many wives you have is of course irrelevant. How ever the questions asked by RO and replied given by potential candidates does make a laughable reading. In fact if collected and reproduced in a book form it could a best seller.
April 6, 2013 11:29 pm
Pakistani peoples know about all the politicians and now is their exam in election whether they will eat poison again or they will reject all influences and will sacrify for the future of Pakistan .They have now one correct leader for selection.
April 7, 2013 12:20 am
How us this Irrelevant , her husband is defaulter of Rs. 35Million ,? Is she claiming that she has not benefited from these 35Million. I believe this default is for the last 5 years when she was a minister ? what other proof do we need. I would say search their houses for hidden wealth.
April 7, 2013 3:12 am
She was asked hte Nikahnama only cause she shows huge liabilities owed by her husband, now she also needs to document her link to the guy she is showing to have liabilities its all about proper financial documentation. Media just make a story out of nothing.
April 7, 2013 3:20 am
April 7, 2013 2:39 pm
He has not paid tax money and bills for his factory...
dr vimal raina
April 7, 2013 2:44 pm
Usa, Israel and India are behind all this nonsense, to answer your last question.
April 8, 2013 6:46 am
@singh: save ur poverty stricken country first then instruct us!!!
April 8, 2013 8:03 am
This is Pakistan's growing problem. Once the Mullahs take over, they will bring the country to the ground. To be honest, the only man who can bring sanity back to Pakistan is a dictator different from the likes of Ayub Khan and Yahah Khan - there is Musharaf. You honestly need the man without blinkers on.
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