ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of the Islamabad High Court Aamer Farooq on Thursday issued notices to the PTI, Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC), Election Commission of Pakistan and federal and provincial governments on a petition that challenged the ECP’s power to deprive election symbol and deny reserved seats to political parties.

The petitioner, Amna Ameer Abdullah, a lawyer, contended before the court that ECP has no jurisdiction to interpret the Constitution or statutory provisions and the same is unsustainable in the eye of law.

The ECP is neither a court of law nor a judicial tribunal. Such jurisdiction has not been given to the ECP under the Constitution and the Act.

The petition stated that the ECP’s actions are riddled with malice in law and malice in fact, based on mala fide intentions.

This fact is apparent on the face of it and is discriminatory, as no similar scrutiny, action, inaction, or investigation has been conducted against any other political party.

It further said that the ECP has no authority or jurisdiction to interpret the law or to determine how to amend the provisions of Articles 51 and 106, and such an amendment would constitute an abrogation of Article 6 of the Constitution.

It added that the ECP has expanded its scope improperly by allocating seats meant for PTI candidates or its allies to other political parties, which contradicts the provisions of Articles 51 and 106 of the Constitution.

Further hearing in this case has been adjourned till May 31.

Published in Dawn, May 10th, 2024

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