PTI's preamble to questionnaire responses
In its latest submission to the JC ─ an 11-page document ─ the PTI says it is the responsibility of the JC to "inquire into and determine" the answers to Section 3 of the [General Elections 2013 Inquiry Commission Ordinance 2015] within the forty-five day time period prescribed by the Ordinance.
Section 3: GE 2013 Inquiry Commission Ordinance 2015
Scope of Inquiry ─ The Commission shall inquire into and determine whether or not (a) The General Elections 2013 were organised and conducted impartially, honestly, fairly, justly and in accordance with law; (b) The General Elections 2013 were manipulated or influenced pursuant to a systematic effort by design by anyone; and (c) The results of the General Elections 2013, on an overall basis, are a true and fair reflection of the mandate given by the electorate.
The PTI also states that "the onus to prove any allegation cannot be placed entirely on any political party or person raising the same before the Commission", and that the most a political party can be held responsible for is establishing a 'prima facie' basis for allegations, which the Commission is obligated to investigate "in pursuance of its inquisitorial role ... to ascertain the truth".
The PTI reminds the JC that it has been awarded "substantial powers" to fulfil its obligations regarding the investigation, and both the Election Commission of Pakistan and the PML-N federal and provincial governments retain authority to summon "relevant public records and documents".
The party said that just because they were unable to access the relevant material and evidence, their allegations cannot be interpreted as "frivolous, reckless or iressponsible".
They also state that "witnesses suggested by the PTI are not its witnesses to whom summons will have to be issued by the Commission to appear".
Under Section 5(3), while political parties are granted the right to submit evidence supporting the inquiries mentioned in Section 3, the PTI reiterated the statutory duty of the JC to "undertake its enquiry and submit its final report on the matter".
Section 5: Procedure to be followed by the Commission and rights of political parties to representation before the Commission.
(3) For the purposes of Section 3, any political party which participated in the General Elections 2013 shall, and such other persons as the Commission may permit in the interest of justice may, have the right and opportunity to submit evidence or material and make submissions thereon for consideration by the Commission.
The PTI considers its role in the investigation as one that provides assistance to the Commission, and identifies matters which are necessary and appropriate for the JC to investigate under Sections 4(1), 4(2) and 6 of the Ordinance.
Section 4: Powers of Commission.
(1) The Commission shall have all the powers of a criminal court under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (V of 1898) and that of a civil court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (VI of 1908) for carrying out the purposes of this Ordinance. (2) Without prejudice to the generality of sub-section (1), the Commission shall have power to require any person or authority to furnish information or documents on such points or matters as, in the opinion of the Commission, may be useful for, or relevant to, the subject-matter of the inquiry.
Section 6: Federation and Provinces to assist the Commission and Special Investigation Team.
(1) It shall be the duty of all executive authorities in the Federation and in the Provinces to assist the Commission in the discharge of its functions and to comply with any of its directions and the Federal Government shall provide all necessary funds and facilities to enable the Commission to perform its functions under this Ordinance.
(2) Without limiting the generality of sub-section (1), the Commission shall have the power to form one or more special investigation teams consisting of officers from the relevant executive authorities, including but not limited to, the Federal Investigation Agency, the National Database and Registration Authority, the Directorate for Inter Services Intelligence, the Directorate for Military Intelligence, and the Intelligence Bureau for the purpose of assisting it in its inquiry.
Explanation.— For the purpose of this Ordinance, any public servant who was appointed by or assisted the Election Commission in respect of the organization or conduct of the General Elections 2013 shall be deemed to be an executive authority.
The PTI claims to have provided "considerable assistance" to the Commission by means of their earlier submissions ─ "PTI Submission, statements and other written submissions, applications and materials filed with the Commission on its behalf".
The party calls for an "objective but detailed probe and enquiry into its allegations".
The PTI says it's case is reliant on "materials and details" referred to in their earlier "PTI Submission", evidence regarding National Assembly and Provincial Assembly constituencies, video evidence, a NADRA Analysis Report with respect to specific constituencies, any material unearthed by the JC during investigation proceedings, and any evidence presented by other political parties before the Commission.
The PTI encourages the JC to adopt the provisions of 'Discovery and Inspection' as laid out in the Code of Civil Procedure 1908 to serve interrogatories and notices compelling the admittance and examination of facts and documents regarding the investigation.
The party unequivocally "considers PML-N to have usurped the popular mandate through unfair means", and that the true mandate was "illegally manipulated and stolen and that the true results are materially at variance form the officially notified (and disputed) results".
The party alleges that the "architects of the plan were obviously the beneficiaries thereof - which is the PML-N, its supporters, accomplices, associates and cohorts", and adds "other political parties and persons may also have been part of this 'plan and or design' as there appears to also be an element of quid pro quo on a Provincial basis between certain political parties".
The party believes that election fraud was committed by means of "collusion ... with Returning Officers and Presiding Officers and the manipulation and manoeuvring [sic] of the bureacracy and election machinery".