ECP not to succumb to political pressure: CEC

ISLAMABAD - Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Justice (Retd) Sardar Raza Khan on Tuesday said that political pressure could not deter the working of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

He made these remarks during the hearing of references to disqualify PTI MNAs Imran Khan and Jhangir Tareen sent by National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq.

He expressed displeasure over statements of some politicians from PTI that ECP is toeing the government line and was deliberately delaying the hearing of their references.

The five-member bench led CEC Sardar Raza Khan adjourned the hearing till January 18 as non of the legal counsels of petitioners and respondents could make their presence for different reasons.

Naeem Bukhari Advocate, legal counsel of Imran Khan, could not appear because of his engagement in the Supreme Court in connection to hearing of the Panama Leaks case.

While Akram Sheikh Advocate, who represents MNA Talal Chaudhry sent an application citing health grounds for not appearing in the ECP today.

PTI Leader Naeen ul Haq after the adjournment of hearing told the media that since these disqualification references are flimsily and are based on mala fide therefore the NA speaker is shying away from defending himself.

Bukhari during the previous hearing argued that NA speaker should himself defend these references.

Akram Sheikh Advocate at that time had informed the Commission that he has solid evidence against the respondents and will submit relevant documents in this connection during the next hearing.   

Meanwhile, the ECP also adjourned hearing of petition filed by former ANP MNA Bushra Gohar against Senator Liaquat Khan Tarakai and his sons for concealing their assets in the declarations filed to the Election Commission for contesting elections for different seats.

In another development, the ECP declared name of the returned candidates against the seats of Chairman and Vice Chairman in District Council Khushab of the Punjab arising from Local Government Elections to the said categories held on December 22, 2016.

According to the notification, Sumaira Malik has been declared as Chairman while Malik Masood Nazir Awan as Vice Chairman of the district Council Khushab.

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