LG polls: MQM to challenge SHC decision in SC

KARACHI   –   The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) has decided to challenge the Sindh High Court’s decision with regard to the local government elections in the Supreme Court.

The SHC on Friday rejected a plea from major political parties in the province to delay the local government elections. The MQM-P preparing a constitutional petition in the Supreme Court, party sources said. The party have reservations over delimitation of constituencies, which were made to benefit a party, sources said. “The work on voters lists yet to complete, moreover there are reservations on lists having errors and irregularities,” according to sources. Party sources said that the Supreme Court verdict with regard to local government elections has not been implemented, it is non-compliance of the court’s decision. “Moreover, the powers have also not been transferred under Article 140-A, it will be a question mark to hold local government elections in such situation,” party sources added.

The high court while rejecting the plea to defer elections scheduled in the province in two phases on June 26 (tomorrow) and July 24, directed the ECP to hold the polls as per the schedule. During the hearing, Justice Junaid Ghaffar asked the ECP counsel why elections were delayed beyond a mandatory 120-day period. “Census and delimitation process led to the delay and as soon as the government approved the 2017 census we initiated the election process,” he said.

He added that local government elections have already been conducted in KP and Balochistan provinces while the process is being delayed in Punjab owing to court orders and ordinances.

“The first phase of polls in Sindh will be on Sunday and preparations are also completed for the second phase scheduled in July,” he said. It is pertinent to mention here that the major political parties in Sindh had agreed to ask the ECP to delay local government elections in Sindh. The political parties that have agreed to defer local government elections included Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) and Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA).

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