LHC rules in favour of PML-N MPA Mian Tariq
February 24, 2023 05:41 AM
The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday declared the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) order in which it had declared Mian Tariq Mehmood, who had been elected member of the Punjab Assembly (MPA) in general elections of 2013 on a PML-N ticket, ineligible for holding any public office null and void, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
The 14-page verdict is being described as a judicial precedent.
Justice Shahid Kareem wrote that the ECP had no right to declare somebody ineligible on a private person’s reference. “In the light of Article 63 (2) of the constitution, the election commission is only authorized to hear the reference sent by the National Assembly speaker or the Senate chairman,” read the verdict.
The judge also made it clear that the ECP’s act of disqualifying an MPA constituted ‘misuse of power’, and that this could not be sanctioned.
The verdict said that the ECP had declared the MPA ineligible under clause 3 of Article 218. “However, the fact is the said article gives no such right to the commission. The commission’s only job under the article is to hold free and fair elections,” it added.
The judge expressed the fear that if such practice was allowed to continue, then ordinary people will be able to blackmail the lawmakers through such petitions. “This case is the classic example of the ECP going beyond its powers given in the constitution,” read the verdict.
Reporter: Malik Ashraf