IHC issues notices to NA Speaker, ECP on PTI plea

News Desk
Friday, Aug 05, 2022

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday served notices to relevant officials and institutions on Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf’s (PTI) plea challenging the “piecemeal” acceptance of its lawmakers’ resignations.

Acting Chief Justice IHC Aamer Farooq issued notices to National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf, the NA secretary, and the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

PTI Secretary General Asad Umar had filed the plea on behalf of his party on Monday after the NA Speaker accepted the resignations of 11 MNAs. In the petition, the PTI leader demanded that all 123 MNAs should be de-notified together and their seats be declared vacant.

Before adjourning proceedings till August 16, Justice Farooq directed the representatives of the NA secretary to appear before him along with the relevant record at the next hearing.

Following the passage of the no-confidence vote against PTI Chairman Imran Khan — the only prime minister to be removed through such move — his party’s MNAs resigned en masse in April.

The IHC registrar’s office had earlier raised an objection to the petition regarding the absence of an authority letter. However, the objections were later removed and the petition was fixed for Thursday before the IHC’s acting chief justice. Asad, in the petition filed through his counsel Shoaib Shaheen, stated the PTI MNAs had tendered their resignations after the no-confidence vote, and Shah Mahmood Qureshi had announced the decision. The then-deputy speaker Qasim Suri had accepted the resignations, the petitioner stated, contending the sitting speaker had no authority to delay the acceptance of resignations.

He maintained the speaker was bound to send the resignations to the ECP, which would announce by-elections on the vacant seats.