ISLAMABAD - Former chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Nasirul Mulk will take oath as caretaker prime minister today (Friday) as the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz completed its five-year term on May 31.

The National Assembly stood automatically dissolved at midnight on Thursday on completion of its five-year constitutional tenure.

The Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs also issued a notification on Thursday announcing the dissolution of the 14th National Assembly at midnight on May 31.

Outgoing PM, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, spent a busy last day in the office, as he tried to complete all assignments before walking out. Officials said preparations had been completed for the oath-taking ceremony and all the guests had been invited.

The end of the five-year term of the PML-N government paved way for a caretaker setup to conduct general elections. President Mamnoon Hussain has approved July 25 for the general elections, which will see more than 100 million voters to vote for both the national and provincial assemblies.

The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, the Pakistan People’s Party and the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf are aiming to form the next federal government. All the parties have to perform well in the populous Punjab province to be in a position to form the government in the centre.

For now, the PML-N, the PPP and the PTI have expressed the expectations that Mulk will oversee the general elections as a neutral interim PM.

After the 2013 polls, with Mir Hazar Khan Khoso as the caretaker PM, all the parties had claimed rigging in different areas. The PPP called it a returning officers’ election while the PTI launched a marathon campaign to press for snap polls. The PML-N government, however, managed to survive.

But the embattled PML-N suffered a loss when Nawaz Sharif was disqualified as the prime minister in July 2017 by the Supreme Court for hiding assets. He is still facing the corruption cases filed by the National Accountability Bureau. Recently, Khawaja Mohammed Asif was also disqualified as the foreign minister and lawmaker by the top court for concealing assets.

Mulk’s name was announced by PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and opposition leader Khurshid Shah this week after a series of meetings.

Justice Mulk was born on August 17, 1950 in Mingora, Swat. He completed his degree of Bar-at-Law from Inner Temple London and was called to the Bar in 1977.

The retired judge practised as an advocate in all fields of law for more than 17 years until his elevation as a judge of the Peshawar High Court. He remained the PHC Chief Justice for some time before his elevation as a judge of the Supreme Court. He is known for the way he conducted a contempt case against then prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in 2012.

He had convicted the then PM for 30 seconds, and left the disqualification issue open to the Election Commission of Pakistan and the then speaker of the National Assembly Dr Fehmida Mirza.

Mulk is one of the seven judges who signed a restraining order on November 3, 2007, when the then military ruler, Pervez Musharraf, imposed an emergency and sacked several judges including the then chief justice, Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry. He has served as a judge in Peshawar High Court, chief justice of Pakistan and the chief election commissioner.

Last day, the Election Commission of Pakistan summoned assets details of the caretaker prime minister-designate and his family members.

The commission directed to provide assets details within three days after taking office. The details would be provided on ECP’s form-B.

PM Abbasi, who will attend Mulk’s oath-taking today (June 1), spent busy last day in the office yesterday. He spoke in the National Assembly, addressed a news conference and chaired a cabinet meeting among other engagements.

Abbasi has expressed his confidence that the general elections would be held on July 25. As per the constitution the Election Commission is bound to hold general elections within 60 days after the end of current National Assembly’s tenure on May 31. His words came after a resolution was passed by the outgoing Balochistan Assembly to postpone the polls.