IHC stops ECP from acting against PM for election code violation

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The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday barred the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) from initiating action against Prime Minister Imran Khan for allegedly violating the code of conduct during the ongoing campaign for the second phase of the local government polls in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Justice Aamer Farooq observed that the electoral body could issue notices over a breach of law but couldn’t impose fines or disqualify candidates.

The ECP earlier issued notices to Prime Minister Khan, KP Governor Shah Farman, Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, federal ministers Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Asad Umar and Murad Saeed, and others for allegedly violating the canvassing rules ahead of the polls, set to take place on March 31.

After receiving the ECP notices, PM Imran and Planning Minister Asad Umar had petitioned the IHC, claiming that since the presidential ordinance last month that amended election laws in the country, public office holders were now allowed to canvass during election campaigns.

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