SC rejects KP govt plea to halt LG polls’ second phase


The Supreme Court on Monday rejected the petition of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government which sought a halt to the second phase of local government elections scheduled to be held on March 31 saying that the court does not want to interfere in the elections affairs thus setting a wrong precedent.

During the hearing, Justice Ahsan remarked that there was no reason that the apex court interfered in the polls affairs. He said that it was the duty of Election Commission of Pakistan to issue the polls schedule and hold elections.

While rejecting the KP government’s plea seeking a halt to the second phase of LG polls, the Supreme Court ordered the ECP to listen to the stance of all parties including the provincial government and issue an appropriate order. Justice Ahsan said: “For personal interests, they should not shatter people’s confidence in institutions.”

The ECP lawyer told the court that the KP government itself gave March 25 date for the polls and it was not even a party to the case in the Peshawar High Court.

On this, the judge remarked now the provincial government itself was running from the schedule.

“Now the KP government says that it will hold election after Ramazan. Tomorrow it will say that it will conduct elections after Eidul Fitr. After that it will say Eidul Azha is approaching. Then Muharram will start and so on. It means that the LG polls will not be held,” he added.

Justice Ahsan said since the ECP released the election schedule for March 31, the court would not give any order against the ECP decision.

“The second phase of LG polls will be held on March 31,” the judge pronounced adding that if the ECP wanted, it could change the election schedule and issue another schedule.

With this, the court said that after the new ECP schedule all appeals had become ineffective and rejected the KP petition to halt the LG polls.