PESHAWAR: An election tribunal on Monday de-seated Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf MNA Qaisar Jamal and directed the Election Commission of Pakistan to hold re-election in his constituency, NA-47 in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.
The tribunal for Dera Ismail Khan headed by Yahya Zahid Gillani declared the election of Mr Qaisar void under the Representation of People’s Act in a short order after hearing the petition of PTI MNA’s rival candidate Haji Abid Afridi at a camp court in the provincial capital.
The petitioner had challenged Qaisar Jamal’s election as MNA over ‘the printing of wrong election symbol for a candidate in the ballot paper and corrupt practices.’
The judge pronounced that the notification of the ECP issued on May 22, 2013, to the extent of declaring Mr Qaisar a returned candidate for NA-47, Tribal Area XII, has been set aside; the seat of the said constituency is declared vacant, and the ECP has been directed to hold fresh election in the constituency in accordance with the law.
The tribunal observed that any aggrieved party could file appeal in the Supreme Court against this decision within 30 days in accordance with law.
The ECP had declared Mr Qaisar Jamal successful after the last year general elections. He had secured 11,328 votes.
Barrister Gohar Ali, lawyer for the petitioner, said Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party candidate Kamil Sherani had applied for his party symbol, tree, and the ECP had allotted him the same but on the day of polling instead of tree, the symbol of corn was printed along with his name.
He said the returning officer had also forwarded an application to the ECP to demand re-election in the constituency over the said mistake.
The lawyer said around 35 candidates were in the running for election and as it was a set precedent that after commission of such gross mistake, polling couldn’t be conducted and therefore, several candidates withdrew their polling and election agents.
He said the candidates in question had opposed the consolidation of results by the returning officer but the officer told them that he was asked by the relevant officials to consolidate the results after which re-election would be ordered.