PHC restores PTI’s bat election symbol


PESHAWAR (APP): The Peshawar High Court (PHC) here Wednesday restored the election symbol i.e ‘Bat’ of Pakistan Tahrik e Insaf (PTI).

A two-member bench of PHC comprising Justice Ijaz Anwar Khan and Justice Arshad Ali announced that PTI was a political party and entitled of an election symbol.

The court declared that the decision of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) of revoking PTI’s election symbol was incorrect. The court announced its verdict following the hearing of PTI’s petition challenging the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision declaring the intra-party election of PTI as null and void and revoking their electoral symbol “bat”.

After the verdict, the court ordered the ECP to issue a certificate to the PTI and suspended the decision that stripped the party of its symbol. The court passed the judgment after hearing arguments by the counsels of ECP and the PTI.

PTI’s counsel, Barrister Ali Zafar declared that the judgment of PHC was a victory of law and the Constitution.

The case was heard by a two-member bench comprising Justice Ijaz Anwar and Justice Syed Arshad Ali of the PHC, in which the lawyers of the parties objecting to intra-party election of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) gave arguments.

Earlier, the lawyers of PTI and Election Commission had completed their arguments last day. During the hearing, Qazi Javed Advocate said in his arguments that my client was the former district general secretary of PTI, who was found out from the media that intra-party Elections are taking place. He wanted to participate in the election but was not given the opportunity.

Justice Ijaz Anwar said that he did not say that the intra-party elections should be conducted again. If the Election Commission annulled the intra-party elections, then you should have called for re-elections.

If you were from the party, then you should have objected to withdrawing the party symbol, but you did not, to which Qazi Javed said that we were not given a chance in the elections and went to the Election Commission against it.

Qazi Javed Advocate said that the intra-party elections are for the whole country. High Court can only look at the province, on which Justice Arshad Ali inquired whether they should have made separate cases in each province? If the Intra Party election was held in Peshawar, how can you not file a case here? Justice Ejaz Anwar asked whether all the members were elected in the election that took place or only to the extent of the province. to which Qazi Javed Advocate replied that the representatives of the entire country were elected.

Justice Ejaz Anwar said that an election has been held here and the Election Commission has declared it null and void. The intra-party election was held in Peshawar, so why can’t it be challenged here?

On which Qazi Javed Advocate said that there are decisions of the courts regarding the jurisdiction, they had also gone to the Lahore High Court (LHC), where their application was rejected.

Justice Ejaz Anwar said that the LHC has written in the order that the case is under hearing in the PHC and the Supreme Court, let the PHC decide.

During the hearing, the lawyer-complainant said in his arguments that if PTI is talking about a level playing field, then it should give this field to its workers as well. The party workers did not know where the elections were. Then a bubble popped and an intra-party election took place.

Justice Ejaz Anwar remarked that then that bubble also burst. Do not talk about politics, come to the legal point. You are also saying that the intra-party elections were not done well. it is right to withdraw the marks from them.

The lawyer said that why should I support a party which cannot hold intra-party elections according to the law? Election symbols keep changing, new symbols can be given for every election.

Later in the case, Jahangir’s lawyer of Charsadda, Naveed Akhtar said in his arguments that my client had been the district president, on a statement Jahangir was dismissed from the party. Officials are not elected as required by the constitution. The updated list of officials should be given to the Election Commission. Electoral symbol is also given to a political party according to its credibility. Party constitution and voter protection must be taken into consideration.

When the hearing resumed after a break from the court, Justice Arshad Ali inquired whether there could be a penalty for intra-party elections, whether the Election Commission has taken this action, to which the lawyer said no, the Election Commission has issued 215 of the Election Act. Action taken under

Justice Arshad Ali remarked that there is no question of intra-party elections in this section. The court said that if there is a violation of 209 then action can be taken under 208 and under 215. Section 209 says the results should be submitted to the commission within 7 days, they submitted the results within 7 days.

The counsel for the complainant argued that the Election Commission should have seen that the intra-party elections were held under Section 208. I have to discuss how the intra-party elections were held, to which Justice Ijaz Anwar said, “No, you are not talking about it.” Can’t, we haven’t heard them on that either. How the election was done will be discussed again on the evidence.

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