ISLAMABAD: As 25 PTI dissident members of the Punjab Assembly tried to seek refuge in technicalities, their lawyers pleaded before a bench of the ECP on Friday that the spirit behind Article 63-A of the Constitution must not be allowed to be defeated.

Most of the 25 dissident MPAs tried to justify their action of voting in favour of PML-N’s Hamza Shehbaz Sharif by claiming that they had received no directives from the party. They raised procedural objections and claimed they never received any show-cause notices — a mandatory requirement.

Barrister Ali Zafar, representing the PTI before a three-member bench of the ECP, argued that the objective behind Article 63-A was to eradicate defection from the body-politic. “If the defectors are not deseated, it will amount to encouraging defection,” Senator Ali Zafar argued.

Faisal Farid, a PTI counsel, said the 25 MPAs were issued show-cause notices on April 7 for taking part in a “mock election of the chief minister” at a hotel.

“They have not denied voting for the opposition’s candidate and deliberately damaged their party’s standing,” he said. Further hearing was adjourned to Monday.

The PTI dissidents in their replies raised questions about the validity of the declaration of defection and the procedure adopted to seek their disqualification.

Abdul Aleem Khan said in his reply the declaration of defection made by the party head was “without lawful authority” and void in the eyes of the law.

Malik Asad Ali, another MPA, claimed he was not guilty of defection, citing the same article for the alleged violation of which he is facing disqualification.

Published in Dawn, May 14th, 2022

Opinion

Editorial

Iran’s counterstrike
Updated 15 Apr, 2024

Iran’s counterstrike

Israel, by attacking Iran’s diplomatic facilities and violating Syrian airspace, is largely responsible for this dangerous situation.
Opposition alliance
15 Apr, 2024

Opposition alliance

AFTER the customary Ramazan interlude, political activity has resumed as usual. A ‘grand’ opposition alliance ...
On the margins
15 Apr, 2024

On the margins

IT appears that we are bent upon taking the majoritarian path. Thus, the promise of respect and equality for the...
Noshki killings
Updated 14 Apr, 2024

Noshki killings

It must be asked why Baloch separatists continue to target civilians as well as security men despite large deployment.
Upholding the law
14 Apr, 2024

Upholding the law

THE recent discord in Bahawalnagar offers a chance to reflect on the sanctity of the law and its enforcement across...
Tragic travels
14 Apr, 2024

Tragic travels

FOR those embarking on road and boat journeys, the probability of fatal accidents has seen a steady rise. The recent...