SHC asks ECP to hold LB elections in Karachi, Hyderabad

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Sindh High Court criticized the Election Commission of Pakistan for sitting on the local bodies elections in Karachi and Hyderabad, urged them to hold LB election without further delay.

During the hearing of the petitions submitted by PTI and JI on Thursday, the SHC expressed its displeasure over the holdup. Headed by Chief Justice Sindh High Court Justice Ahmed Ali M Shaikh, a 2-member bench took up the case.

Justice Yousaf Ali, questioned the Election Commission counsel during the hearing that why local government elections were being delayed repeatedly. Justice Shaikh remarked that it was ECP’s responsibility to hold local government elections.

In his reply, the ECP’s counsel said it was a public holiday on Wednesday due to which the commission’s meeting could not be held.

The Chie Justice SHC lamented, “It’s Election Commission, not a school. So what if it was a holiday? The meeting could have been held. Enough is enough. Go hold LB elections.”

He asked where were the reports the court had sought from DG Rangers and IG Sindh. Regarding the ECP’s excuse that LB polls were not being held because of a shortage of security personnel for the election, Justice Ahmed unleashed a flurry of questions at the defendant’s lawyer.

“Which police go to secure flood-affected areas? What are they doing with flood victims and what kind of duty are they performing there,” the CJ Sindh High Court asked.

The court sought reports from IG Police and DG Rangers Sindh on the total strength of personnel in the province and how many of them are deployed in flood-affected areas.

He also questioned the Election Commission counsel with regard to police duty in flooded parts of the province.

“Name a village in Sindh where police carried out an operation for the victims of the flood. What is the total strength of the police in Sindh and where are they deployed right now?” he asked.

Having no reply, the advocate general, prayed to the court for more time. Justice Ahmed Ali said the court would not grant the government a lot of time and it would need a report as soon as possible. The court also directed the DG Rangers and IGP Sindh to furnish the court with all the details of their strength or appoint an officer for that.

The SHC later adjourned the hearing will November 14.

 

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