Throwing out govt appeal, SC orders party-based LG polls in KP
The Supreme Court has ordered that the local government elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa will be held on a party basis throwing out the plea of the provincial government seeking a change in the LG poll schedule, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
Justice Umar Ata Bandial said that in order to fortify the democracy in the country, it was necessary to strengthen the political parties. The political parties could not be thrown out of the political process, the judge added.
The three-judge bench of the Supreme Court on Tuesday was hearing an appeal of the KP government against the decision of the Peshawar High Court.
The SC rejected the KP government plea for change in the election schedule directing that the local government elections would be held in the province on a party basis. It remarked that the Election Commission of Pakistan had completed all the arrangements for holding the polls after the judgement of the PHC. There is already a two-year delay in the election schedule, the court remarked.
The KP advocate general said that the province not only needed election, but it also needed true representation.
Justice Bandial observed that the party based elections caused division in the baradaris (families). He said in order to strengthen democracy, the political parties must be bolstered. They could not be ignored in any political activity, he added.
Justice Mansoor Ali Shah lamented that no political party resorted to the court. The political parties should come to the high court, he added.
The KP AG argued that there was no place in the law of the PHC judgement. If the SC issues a stay order, then the provincial government will change the election schedule, he added.
On this, Justice Bandial remarked he vehemently opposed the idea of changing the LG election schedule.
The AG further told the court that in the case of more than one candidate, there might be a problem of printing pictures of every candidate on the ballot paper. He pleaded that his petition against the party-based elections should be heard along with the KP government’s main case.
The court while dismissing his plea, adjourned the hearing of the case for an indefinite time.
Reporter: Amanat Gashkori