KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Monday disposed of a petition filed by the Jamaat-i-Islami after the Election Commission of Pakistan informed it that elections on remaining 11 union committees in Karachi would be held on April 18.

JI Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman had moved the SHC against the federal and provincial election authorities over a delay in holding local government polls in 11 remaining UCs of the city.

On Monday, a two-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ahmed Ali M Sheikh took up the plea when counsel Abdullah Hanjrah filed a statement on behalf of the ECP.

He submitted that the ECP had issued a schedule for the by-elections of first and second phases of local government elections to be held on April 18 in 93 UCs — where elections were not held due to demise of candidates — of 26 districts, including 11 in Karachi division.

He said that the ECP would issue the consolidated results on April 20.

In view of the statement filed by the ECP official, the division bench disposed of the petition with the consent of parties.

On March 8, Hafiz Naeem had petitioned the SHC submitting that despite a lapse of 50 days the provincial government had not held polls for the offices of chairman and vice chairman in the UCs where LG elections had been postponed due to the candidates’ deaths.

His counsel Usman Farooq said submitted that the situation gave an impression to the people that the ECP was extending a favour to the Pakistan Peoples Party.

The counsel stated that the delaying tactics were seemingly aimed at keeping the chairmen and vice chairmen out of the City Council and the Town Councils to stop them from voting in the elections for the mayor and the town chairmen.

Published in Dawn, March 21st, 2023

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