The Supreme Court nullified the ECP's decision to delay elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), ruling that the ECP's decision to hold polls on October 8 was unconstitutional.
ISLAMABAD: (UrduPoint/pakistan Point News-April 5th, 2023) The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Wednesday announced that it will hold elections on May 14, as directed by the Supreme Court, after controversy arose over the court's decision that declared the ECP's postponement of the Punjab elections as unconstitutional.
The decision was made at an emergency meeting held by the ECP to discuss the Supreme Court verdict, which was chaired by the Chief Election Commissioner, Sikandar Sultan Raja.
The Supreme Court nullified the ECP's decision to delay elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), ruling that the ECP's decision to hold polls on October 8 was unconstitutional. In open court, a three-member bench of the Supreme Court, comprising Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Munib Akhtar, and Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan, directed the ECP to restore its previous election schedule and extend it by 13 days. The court clarified that the ECP could not exceed the 90-day stipulated time, and 13 days were wasted because of the ECP's unlawful decision.
The Supreme Court also directed the caretaker government in Punjab to assist the ECP and instructed the commission to inform the court if the government refused to do so. The court emphasized that the constitution and laws of the election commission did not permit the extension of the election date.
According to the decision, candidates can submit their nomination papers from April 10, and the electoral body will publish the list of candidates on April 19. Electoral symbols will be issued by April 20. The government has been directed to release Rs 21 billion for the Punjab elections by April 10, and the ECP must submit a report to the court on the matter on the same day. If the funds are not provided, the court will issue an appropriate order.