LHC issues notices to Hamza Shahbaz, others
The Lahore High Court on Friday issued notices to Hamza Shehbaz and others on separate petitions filed by the PTI and PML-Q’s Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi requesting the court to declare his election as Punjab chief minister “illegal” and to restrain him from working in that capacity.
The PTI had filed a petition on Thursday, while Punjab Assembly speaker Elahi submitted his petition on Friday, which his lawyer, Safdar Shaheen Pirzada, said in a comment is identical to PTI’s.
During the hearing, LHC Chief Justice Mohammad Ameer Bhatti clubbed the petitions together. The PML-N leader faced several delays in assuming charge of the CM Office because of then Punjab governor Omar Sarfraz Cheema’s refusal to administer him oath.
Hamza approached the LHC thrice, seeking directions for his oath to be administered. He was finally sworn in on April 30, by National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf. During the hearing, PTI’s counsel Barrister Ali Zafar argued that in order to win the election for the chief minister, a candidate requires 186 votes.
He referred to the Supreme Court’s interpretation of Article 63-A, related to the disqualification of lawmakers over defection, in which the apex court said the vote of defecting lawmakers would not be counted.
Subsequently, the court issued notices to the respondents which include Hamza, Punjab chief secretary, Punjab Assembly Deputy Speaker Sardar Dost Mohammad Mazari, Punjab governor’s principal secretary and Punjab Assembly’s secretary.