ISLAMABAD, Aug 04 (APP): Election Commission of Pakistan and the government of Sindh on Thursday opposed MQM’s petition in the Supreme Court against the delimitation of constituencies for the second phase of local body elections.
A three-member SC bench comprising Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Mansoor Ali Shah and Justice Munib Akhtar heard the case filed by Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui & others against the Government of Sindh regarding delimitation of constituencies for the election of local bodies.
During the course of proceedings, MQM’s counsel Barrister Farogh Naseem submitted that the population ratio was not kept uniform in constituencies.
The Chief Justice asked whether the Election Commission was satisfied with the delimitation of constituencies.
The ECP’s DG Law said that the delimitation of constituencies was done in accordance with the law.
He said that the delimitation of constituencies was the job of the provincial government and Election Commission’s duty was to hold elections.
The counsel for MQM said that a Union Committee consisted of 90,000 people where MQM was successful while a UC had a population of 40,000 in the areas where the PPP was successful.
Advocate Khalid Javed counsel for the PPP said that if this argument was accepted, the delimitation of constituencies of the national and provincial assemblies would end. Some constituencies of the National Assembly consisted of 300,000 and some 900,000 population, he added.
The Chief Justice said that the court would decide the case after hearing all the parties in
detail on August 15. The election was scheduled on August 28 so there would be no adjournment for the next hearing, he added.
He said that the MQM’s petition was limited to urban areas only.
The court also approved the petitions of the successful representatives in the first phase of elections.
The counsel for MQM said that the Election Commission was taking a stand against the decision of the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court gave the power of delimitation of constituencies to the Election Commission, he added.
He said that the Sindh Local Government Act 2013 was amended against the order of the Supreme Court.
The amendments made in 2015 were in contempt of the Supreme Court’s 2014 judgment,
He said that a union council consisted of 95000 voters while another union council consisted of 30000 voters.
The difference in constituencies was a clear violation of Article 25 of the Constitution and Section 25 of the Election Action Act, 2017, he added.
He alleged that the difference in constituencies was deliberate so that PPP could elect its own mayor.
Subsequently, hearing of the case was adjourned till August 15.