Daska by-polls: SC once again rejects request to declare ECP order illegal

SC hears plea against ECP’s decision of re-polling in NA-75 Daska

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Islamabad: Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday has conducted hearing on a petition filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) against the decision of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) regarding re-polling in NA-75 Daska.

During the proceedings, PTI lawyer advocate Mohammad Shahzad Shaukat said that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had raised objections over 23 polling stations. The returning office said that no concerns were recorded on the results of 340 polling stations, he added.

The PTI has requested to suspend ECP’s decision of re-election in the constitution on March 18 till the verdict of the apex court.

Shahzad Shaukat stated that the commission had exceeded from its authority by ordering re-poll in NA-75 Daska.

At the same time, Senior Justice Umar Atta Bandial stated that the case may be closed before the polling day. He also instructed to record arguments regarding ECP’s jurisdiction on this issue.

In February 2021, the ECP had nullified by-election in NA-75 Daska and ordered to conduct re-polling in the entire constituency on March 18.

Announcing the reserved verdict, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja had declared that the by-poll in the constituency was not fair and transparent. Law and order situation was disrupted while an environment of fear was also created among the locals, he added.

It is to be mentioned here that the returning officer in NA-75 Daska had withheld the by-poll results in NA-75 Daska due to violence and alleged vote fraud. The results will now be announced by the ECP after proper inquiry.

According to the unofficial results of 337 polling stations, PML-N candidate Nosheen Iftikhar (97,588 votes) was leading Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Ali Asjad Malhi (94,541 votes). However, results of 23 polling stations were delayed.

In the preliminary report, the Returning Officer expressed doubts about the results of the 20 polling stations.

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