The Islamabad High Court adjourns the hearing till August 22 for additional proceedings.
ISLAMABAD – The Islamabad High court (IHC) on Thursday extended its restraining order to the Election commission of Pakistan (ECP) from taking action against ex-prime minister Imran Khan and therefore the former federal minister Asad Umer for allegedly violating the election code of conduct by attending a public gathering in Lower Dir whereas holding the public post.
A single bench of the IHC comprising Acting judge of IHC Justice Aamer Farooq conducted a hearing of the petition moved by Imran and Asad challenging the ECP’s notices against them to present in a public gathering in Lower Dir.
In this matter, the IHC bench had antecedently restrained the Election commission of Pakistan (ECP) from taking action against the former prime minister Imran Khan and therefore the former federal minister Asad Umer for purportedly violating the election code of conduct by attending a public gathering in Lower Dir.
The bench had observed that the commission may issue notices over a breach of law however couldn’t impose fines or disqualify candidates.
During the hearing, the associate attorney of Imran and Asad appeared before the court and sought-after adjournment because of the non-availability of the counsels representing Imran and Asad.
Accepting the plea, the IHC bench adjourned the hearing during this matter until August 22 for additional proceedings.
It was March 11 when the ECP issued notices to Imran Khan and several different PTI leaders for attending a public gathering in Lower Dir. Both the petitioners moved the IHC against the notices and prayed to the court to nullify the same.
Previously, petitioners’ counsel attorney Ali Zafar told the IHC bench that on February 19, the Elections (Amendment) Ordinance 2022 had been publicized that allowed public officeholders to partake in election campaigns.
In their petition touched through Ali Zafar Advocate, they raised different queries of law concerned during this case including whether or not the ECP will amend and nullify the provisions of Elections Act, 2017 by supplying a Code of Conduct of elections, whether or not just in case of conflict, the provisions of the Elections Act, 2017,
overturn any provisions of the Code of Conduct, whether or not the commission has the power to enact under the Constitution, whether or not the commission has the power to declare a provision of Elections Act, 2017 as ultra vires and devoid of the Constitution, and whether or not the commission is hound by the law, particularly the Elections Act 2017 and requires to follow it in letter and spirit?
The petitioners adopted that under the Constitution and therefore the law, the commission has no jurisdiction or authority or power to declare Section 181-A to be ultra vires the Constitution, illegal, void, or of no impact.
The same that within the order dated 10/03/2022, the ECP stepped into the shoes of the general assembly and considered itself as an above constitutional legislative forum that may, on its own, commit to succeed and ignore the law by passing a Code of Conduct.
They also added that it’s with all respect submitted that the order dated 10/03/2022 is vulnerable to be declared unlawful and extrajudicial.
They added that The revised clause sixteen within the Code of Conduct is in clear violation of and contrary to Section 181- A and therefore, ultra vires. No reliance will therefore be placed on the revised Code of Conduct.
The order of the commission dated 10/03/2022 during which the Code of Conduct was revised, the revised Code of Conduct itself and therefore the notices supported the same is, therefore, ultra vires the Elections Act, 2017 and square measure vulnerable to be declared per se.
Therefore, they prayed to the court that the order dated 10/03/2022 of the commission, the amended clause sixteen of the Code of Conduct issued within the supposed exercise of the powers below Section 233 of the Elections Act 2017, and therefore the notices dated 11/03/2022 could kindly be declared to be extrajudicial, unlawful, void and immoderate vies of the Constitution.
They conjointly prayed that in the pendency of this petition, the same order of the commission, the amended clause sixteen of the Code of Conduct, and therefore the notices could also be suspended within the interest of justice.