ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday declined the request of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf to issue a restraining order in the foreign funding case.
PTI’s additional general secretary Amir Mehmood Kiani filed the petition before the IHC against Election Commission of Pakistan’s proceedings related to the foreign funding case and issuance of a show-cause notice by the commission.
An IHC division bench comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Babar Sattar heard the petition.
PTI counsel Anwar Mansoor Khan argued that that issuance of the show-cause notice is likely to adversely affect the petitioner party if other political parties are not treated at par.
In response to the court’s query, the ECP representative stated that the pending proceedings would follow the procedure prescribed under rule 6 of the Political Parties Rules, 2002, provided the commission is satisfied that sufficient material is available to issue a show-cause notice.
The court noted that the ECP has been established under the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973 and it is competent to regulate its own proceedings.
“The PTI’s counsel may raise the same concerns on behalf of the political party before the Commission and we see no reason why they would not be considered so as to ensure level playing field for all the parties”, observed the bench.
“We repose our confidence in the Commission and we have no reason to doubt that the legitimate rights of the petitioner party will not be safeguarded,” the bench further observed.
The court however asked the commission not to pass any adverse order against PTI at this stage because the ECP, after concluding the pending proceedings, would be required to consider whether or not to issue a show-cause notice under rule 6 of the Rules of 2002.
The court subsequently disposed of the petition.
Published in Dawn, June 10th, 2022