In a key development from Pakistan, deposed Prime Minister Imran Khan has now challenged the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) at the Supreme Court against its declaration on May 11. The declaration had rejected the disqualification references against 20 party dissident Members of the National Assembly (MNAs). The ECP, last month, had dismissed Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s references seeking the disqualification of its dissident MNAs after they voted against Imran Khan in the no-confidence motion.
The no-confidence motion had led to the collapse of the Imran Khan-led PTI government. Following this, PTI demanded that the 20 dissident MNAs be de-seated under Article 63A of the Constitution. However, a three-member ECP bench took a unanimous decision to reject the references referred to the commission by the PTI against the MNAs. Following this, the PTI has now knocked on the doors of the Pakistan SC against the order.
The ECP, in its order, had observed that the alleged rebel parliamentarians had neither resigned nor made any media statement announcing that they have joined another party. Therefore, it ruled that PTI has failed to substantiate that defection has occurred as per the provisions of Article 63A. The PTI had filed disqualification references against MNAs Noor Alam Khan, Dr Mohammad Afzal Khan Dhandla, Nawab Sher Waseer, Raja Riaz Ahmad, and Ahmed Hussain Deharr among many others. PTI’s lawyer Faisal Chaudhry had requested the court to provide a copy of the reserved verdict, maintaining that the dissidents were against PTI’s request to provide more records. He had mentioned that the order will be challenged.
Imran Khan ousted from Prime Ministership
After completing three and a half years in power, the Imran Khan-led regime was under fire over the surging inflation, increasing debt, misgovernance and mishandling of foreign policy which is reflected in the stalling of CPEC projects and US President Joe Biden’s snub. On March 8, Pakistan’s main opposition parties filed a no-confidence motion against Khan. The no-confidence vote against the Khan-led Pakistan government was held on April 9. With 174 members recording their votes in favour of the motion, Khan became the first Pakistan PM to lose a no-trust vote in the National Assembly. Meanwhile, amid the ongoing political upheaval in Islamabad, Khan on Wednesday was re-elected as the chairman of PTI.
(With ANI inputs)