ISLAMABAD: The ECP has rejected PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif’s plea challenging his defeat on NA-15 Mansehra-Torghar.

PTI-backed Shahzada Gustasup Khan defeated Mr Sharif with a margin of over 25,000 votes on February 8. The former secured 105,249 votes, while Mr Sharif bagged 80,382 votes, according to ECP’s provisional results.

The PML-N supremo had challenged the victory notification of his rival and claimed that Form-45 of 125 polling stations of the constituency was not issued since access to Kala Dhakka, a remote area of the constituency, was disturbed due to snowfall.

The ECP, however, rej­e­cted the application on Thursday over non-pursuance before Mr Sharif’s counsel, Jehangir Jadoon, could join the proceedings.

Withholds Awn’s victory notification; orders probe into NA-27 rigging allegatio

When Mr Jadoon explained that he was busy with another case and asked the commission not to dismiss the plea, he was asked to file another application, which was later submitted.

In a related development, the ECP has suspended the victory notification of Istehkam-i-Pakistan Party’s (IPP) Awn Chaudhary, who had earlier been declared winner from NA-128 (Lahore).

The decision was taken after a petition was filed by the PTI-backed candidate from the constituency, Salman Akram Raja.

The commission has also suspended the victory notification of NA-27 (Khyber), where PTI-backed Mohd. Iqbal Khan was declared the winner.

The order was issued after a rival candidate accused Mr Khan of widespread rigging.

After hearing arguments, the bench constituted an inquiry committee, which will submit its report within seven days after recording the statements of relevant election staffand the matter will be taken up again on Feb 21.

With input from Nisar Ahmad Khan in Mansehra

Published in Dawn, February 16th, 2024

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