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January 11, 2019

PTI withdraws plea for Zardari’s disqualification

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January 11, 2019

ISLAMABAD: In an unexpected move, the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf legislator from Sindh Khurram Sher Zaman Thursday applied for withdrawal of an application, seeking disqualification of PPP C-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari as MNA and announced to pursue the matter in the Supreme Court.

As the four-member bench, headed by Sindh member of the Election Commission, Abdul Ghaffar Soomro, initiated hearing regarding the case, PTI MPA Khurram Zaman rose to submit that he wanted to withdraw the application saying that he had gathered more substantial evidence and wanted to pursue the issue in the apex court. Other members were: Justice (R) Altaf Ibrahim Qureshi, Punjab, Justice (R) Shakeel Ahmad Baloch, Balochistan and Justice (R) Mrs Irshad Qaiser, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The PTI lawmaker sounded confident in saying that they had found evidence that would be presented before the Supreme Court. To this, on the instruction of Abdul Ghaffar Soomro, he submitted a handwritten request, saying: "I want to take this case to the Supreme Court because I believe the evidences I have acquired are pivotal and in the best interest of Pakistan."

Afterwards, talking to media persons outside the Election Commission Secretariat, Khurram Zaman claimed to have found more evidence against Asif Zardari and insisted, "The evidence has been verified. Our preparation is complete. We want to take this case to a logical conclusion, therefore, we called on the Election Commission to allow us to take it to the Supreme Court".

A few weeks back, PTI decided to file a disqualification reference against Zardari and the announcement to this effect, was made by Information and Broadcasting Minister Chaudhry Fawad Husain. Later on, the application was submitted to the Sindh Election Commission by Khurram Zaman, who claimed to have substantial evidence that Zardari owned a flat in New York. Exactly, on December 21, Khurram Zaman filed an application, accusing Zardari of owning an apartment in Belaire Condominiums located at 524 East 72nd Street, New York, but he claimed the former president did not declare it in his nomination papers for the 2018 general elections. He contended hence that Zardari did not fulfill the criteria under Article 62 and 63 of the Constitution, therefore, he be disqualified as a legislator. The Election Commission members after mutual consultations decided on December 27 to hold preliminary hearing of the application and Khurram Zaman was to give a presentation to the four-member bench Thursday.

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