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September 22, 2020

SHC reserves judgment on PSP plea against ballot count in Karachi elections

Karachi

September 22, 2020

The Sindh High Court on Monday reserved the judgment on a Pak Sarzameen Party’s (PSP) petition challenging the ballot count in all the polling stations of Karachi in the 2018 General Election after hearing the arguments of counsel.

PSP Karachi chief Asif Husnain submitted in the petition that the ECP had failed to conduct fair and transparent polls in the city. The petitioner’s counsel, Hasan Sabir, said the returning officers and the presiding officers had failed to comply with the mandatory requirements of the Elections Act and the Election Rules.

He said the polling agents were not allowed to witness the counting of votes, and that the presiding officers did not prepare the results of the ballot count in the presence of the polling agents of the candidates.

Sabir said the presiding officers did not affix the result of the vote count to the polling stations and Form 45 and Form 46 were not provided to the polling agents of the candidates. He said various provisions of the Elections Act and the Election Rules were ignored and requested the court to call media reports about the election results that were issued after two and three days of the polling.

The court was requested to declare the ballot count at all the polling stations of Karachi illegal and to direct the ECP to conduct elections in Karachi again. The PSP also sought dismissal of the ECP officials for allegedly failing to perform their duties in accordance with the relevant laws.

The SHC’s division bench, headed by Justice Yousuf Ali Sayeed, questioned the maintainability of the petition and inquired the counsel as to why representations were not moved before the election commission. The court after hearing the arguments of the counsel reserved the judgment on petition.

Travel permission

The SCH allowed Pakistan People Party MPA Shajreel Inam Memon’s spouse to travel abroad for two weeks.

Petitioner Safad Sharjeel submitted in the petition that she was granted bail by the SHC in a NAB reference against her spouse pertained to the accumulation of assets beyond means and her name was placed on the exit control list. She said she wanted to travel abroad due to the examination of her son and requested the court to remove her name from ECL. The NAB counsel opposed the plea of the petitioner. The court, however, granted two weeks time to the petitioner to travel abroad and adjourned the hearing.