ISLAMABAD - The Election Commission of Pakistan on Wednesday again dismissed an application seeking registration of Milli Muslim League.

A four-member panel of the ECP chaired by Abdul Ghaffar announced the decision which is based on a report issued by the interior ministry stating that the aspiring party followed the ideology of Hafiz Saeed, leader of banned outfit Jamaatud Dawa. The Ministry of Interior relied upon details provided by the intelligence agencies.

During the hearing, counsel representing MML said the federal government could not oppose registration of any political party. “No one can predict if a political party can affiliate with banned outfits in the future,” he said. “MML leader Saifullah Khalid has no link with Saeed,” he added.

In a previous hearing, the commission summoned a detailed report from the interior ministry. The enlistment of MML, deemed to be a political offshoot of Jamatud Dawa (JuD), has been pending since last year as the interior ministry awaited appraisal from intelligence agencies about the group.

The government through a Presidential Ordinance has declared that any individual or organisation which has been declared proscribed by the United Nations would be deemed as a banned outfit in the country.

The formation of MML was announced in August last year. Earlier in April, US State Department included Milli Muslim League (MML) in its list of Foreign Terrorist Organisations (FTO), saying it is a front for banned terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

The group, however, denies any link to LeT or any other banned outfit.

MML to move SC

Staff Reporter from Karachi adds: Milli Muslim League announced to move to Supreme Court over dismissal of party request to register as a political party.

Tabish Qayyum who is spokesperson of MML while expressing displeasure over ECP decision, said that it is regrettable that despite the orders of Islamabad High Court Election Commission had refused to register MML as a political party. This development has annoyed the entire nation, he said.

He said that Home Ministry report submitted in the Election Commission is nothing but a pile of false testimony. The government officials who wanted to please their foreign lords were creating obstacles in the registration process of MML, he added.

Party is not going to tolerate injustice and would move a plea in the Supreme Court for the registration of MML.

MML leader further alleged that government on the pressure of the Indian government is creating hurdles in the registration process of MML whereas Election Commission has been tasked to operate fairly disregarded IHC decision.

He said that MML is a political party which has the right to continue its political activities as per the Constitution. So far the government has not come up with any wrongdoing by the party or leaders to halt MML activities.