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Disqualified person can’t head political party, SC rules against Nawaz Sharif

By Web Desk
February 21, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that a person disqualified under Article 62 and 63 of the Constitution cannot head a political party.

A three-member bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar and comprising Justice Umer Ata Bandial and Justice Ijazul Ahsen was hearing into the petitions, challenging the controversial Election Act 2017.

In its judgement, the three-member bench ruled that former premier Nawaz Sharif does not qualify to serve as the PML-N president.

As a result of the SC ruling, all decisions including Senate tickets issued by former premier Nawaz as party chief stand null and void.

Article 17 of the Constitution gives right to form a political party with legal conditions are also included in it, the SC judgement reads.

The Chief Justice remarked that it was mandatory for chief of political party to fulfill the requirements of Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution.

Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was disqualified by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case last year under Article 62 of the Constitution for failing to declare his receivable salary as an asset.

Election Act 2017 had paved the way for deposed prime minister Mian Nawaz Sharif to become head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan, Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, the Pakistan People;s Party (PPP) and 10 others including advocate Zulfiaqar Ahmed Bhutta had filed identical petitions in the apex court, praying for declaring the Election Law 2017 as ultra vires to the Constitution.

During the course of hearing, apex court had observed that Parliament could not enact law against the basic structure of the Constitution and a person who was disqualified by a court of law was issuing party tickets to candidates aspiring for the upcoming elections for the Upper House of the Parliament (Senate).