The Supreme Court of Pakistan on the night of 13 January declared the inter-party elections of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) void and deprived the party of ‘bat’ as its election symbol. After the decision, former PM Imran Khan’s party said that its candidates will now contest the elections as independent candidates. Let us tell you that elections are to be held in Pakistan on 8th February.
Let us tell you that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had challenged the decision of a two-member bench of the Peshawar High Court (PHC), which on Wednesday validated the PTI party’s elections and reinstated the cricket bat as its election symbol. Was.
A three-member bench comprising Chief Justice Qazi Faiz Isa, Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar, and Justice Musarat Hilali reserved its verdict after hearing the ECP’s petition, which was announced late on Saturday night.
How did the controversy over the election symbol start ?
The controversy over PTI’s election symbol began on 22 December when the ECP stripped the party of its election symbol, rejecting intra-party elections for the 8 February elections.
PTI moved the Peshawar High Court which suspended the ECP’s decision through an interim order on 26 December. However, this decision was challenged by the election body and the High Court overturned its decision on 3 January.
The PHC also announced that a two-member panel of judges would hear the issue of PTI’s bat symbol. The two-member panel ruled to restore the ‘bat’ as PTI’s symbol but the ECP challenged it in the apex court.
What loss will PTI suffer without its election symbol ?
The bat is the traditional election symbol of PTI. It is believed that by depriving the party of its election symbol, its candidates will have to contest on different symbols, leading to confusion among party supporters in remote areas on the election day.
Moreover, without a common symbol, PTI will not get its share in the reserved seats in the national and provincial assemblies, which are divided among parties based on proportional representation of seats won in the elections.
Expressing concern over the loss caused by the absence of the party symbol, PTI Chairman Barrister Gauhar Khan said that there are more than 225 such seats in the national and provincial assemblies and PTI will suffer a huge loss.
Reacting to the Supreme Court decision, PTI’s Ali Zafar said that history will judge the apex court’s decision but its immediate impact will be that the PTI candidate will have to contest the elections without a common symbol. “The court has taken away the election symbol but the party is still a registered entity,” he said. As per our policy, all our candidates will contest elections as independent candidates.
PTI Chairman Barrister Gauhar Khan expressed disappointment over the decision, saying that the political rights of PTI and its supporters have been violated. Regarding the verdict which was pronounced two hours late from the scheduled time, he said, ‘This is another bad decision of the Supreme Court.’