Heading a larger bench hearing Karachi law and order suo moto implementation case at SC Karachi Registry, Justice Anwer Zaheer Jamali remarked that delimitation of constituencies had nothing to do with census. He observed that census was required to increase or decrease number of seats of national assembly or provincial assemblies.
Justice Khilji Arif Hussain said that it was Election Commission’s responsibility to ensure that transparent elections are conducted. The court remarked that ECP Sindh secretary had already assured of implementation of the courts directives. Justice Jamali told the ECP lawyer that it was incumbent upon the electoral body to comply with the SC orders. However, the court said it was another issue whether the task was possible or not.
The ECP counsel said that redrawing of electoral constituencies in Karachi might lead to postponement of polls, adding that the task of delimitation could not be carried out as a very short time have left in general elections. “We won’t allow you even in dream to utter a word about delay in elections,” Justice Khilji Arif Hussain told the lawyer. The bench reiterated that delimitation and demarcation are two different things, and added that census is not necessary for redrawing of electoral constituencies in Karachi. The court withdrew its show-cause notice issued to Sindh’s Inspector General Police (IGP) Fayyaz Leghari after the Sindh’s top cop submitted a written apology in court.
The apex court in December ordered the verification of voters’ lists and delimitation of constituencies in Karachi in the petition of 2007 filed by slain premier Benazir Bhutto and later joined by other parties.