ISLAMABAD: A petition has been filed for the disqualification of three PTI members as on the basis that they hold dual nationalities and concealed material facts from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
The petitioners, Abdullah Khan from Islamabad and Chaudhry Mehmood Ali Hashim from Gujrat, filed their petition through their counsel, Ahmed Raza Kasuri.
They have sought the disqualification for PTI MNAs Maleeka Bokhari, Tashfeen Safdar and Kanwal Shauzab, saying that these incumbent lawmakers were dual nationals. The petition cites these three lawmakers and the ECP as respondents.
The lawmakers hold dual nationalities, concealed material facts from ECP, petition says
It says the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) identified Maleeka Bokhari as a UK passport holder. It says that through her affidavit in support of her nomination papers dated June 19, she confirmed that she had renounced her UK nationality and surrendered her passport and claimed that the UK Home Office also acknowledged that she has renounced her British nationality.
The petition says that Ms Bokhari had referred to email correspondence between herself, the first secretary justice and home affairs at the British High Commission in Islamabad and one Dave Walsh at the UK Home Office “in support of the duly signed and stamped declaration of renunciation”. The emails were dated June 11, 2018 and Ms Bokhari had submitted her nominations papers on June 10, 2018.
The petition says that on the deadline set by the ECP for the submission of nomination papers, she was still a dual national. It says that Tashfeen Safdar submitted her nomination papers on June 8 while an FIA report submitted to the ECP identified her as a British passport holder.
In her affidavit, Ms Safdar said she had “not ceased to be a citizen of Pakistan nor had [she] acquired or applied for the citizenship of a foreign state”.
“She had held a foreign passport/nationality when she surrendered vide a declaration of renunciation dated March 25, 2013; which was registered and effectuated/operative by the Home Office, UK on April 04, 2013,” the petition says.
It maintains that Ms Safdar had to disclose her renunciation in the affidavit dated June 8 and that “failure to do so [is] tantamount to mala fide, perjury and fabricating false evidence”.
The petition says Kanwal Shauzab contested the Senate election on a general seat from the federal capital in March 2018 and that she provided details of her registration as a voter in the federal capital. Ms Shauzab did not win the Senate election.
The petition says her permanent and present addresses are in Rawalpindi and Sargodha and maintains that Ms Shauzab has misled the ECP about her residence and registration of vote and that she was therefore ineligible for contesting the elections of holding a seat in the National Assembly.
The petition requests the court to direct these lawmakers to explain their position and that in case the court is not satisfied with their legality for holding their public offices, the ECP be directed to de-notify them under articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution.
Published in Dawn, October 27th, 2018
Download the new Dawn mobile app here: