LHC suspends denotification of 43 PTI MNAs

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Wednesday suspended the denotification of the 43 Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf lawmakers who had challenged the acceptance of their resignations and restrained the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) from holding by-elections on their seats.

Justice Shahid Karim was hearing the plea of the PTI MNAs that had alleged that the decision to accept their resignations by National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf was “illegal” as they had already withdrawn their requests before the notification was issued.


It may be noted here that after PTI chief Imran Khan was ousted as the country’s premier through a vote of no confidence, the PTI had submitted en masse resignations in protest which were accepted by the then deputy speaker Qasim Suri.

The incumbent speaker, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, had however expressed reservations over the resignations and decided to annul the previous decision and began the process of their phase-wise acceptance which he maintained would be done only after the concerned MNAs would confirm their resignations in person.

The 43 MNAs have maintained in their plea that they had only submitted their resignations in compliance with the party policy to obtain “political objectives” and claim that they never verified their resignations to the Speaker.

Further, the lawmakers had also attempted to inform the speaker as well as the ECP that they had withdrawn their resignations.

Their resignations were nonetheless accepted by the speaker and the PTI MNAs were later denotified by the ECP, declaring the seats of the MNAs vacant.


While the courts have thus far resisted intervening in the matter deeming it outside their jurisdiction, the LHC removed the registrar’s office’s objections to PTI’s plea in this case.

During the proceedings, the petitioner’s counsel barrister Ali Zafar argued that the speaker’s decision to accept the withdrawn resignations proves malafide on his part.

After hearing the arguments, Justice Karim suspended the notifications issued by the speaker and the ECP and has also sought replies on the matter from the concerned quarters.


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