ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court of Pakistan Monday delisted the Presidential Reference for the interpretation of Article 63A and deferred the hearing in this matter. Earlier, the reference was fixed for hearing on Tuesday (today) before a five-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Umar Ata Bandial but the same was de-listed as appointment of new attorney general is awaited.

In a related development, Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf urged the apex court to constitute a full court including all the judges for the determination of the questions raised in the Presidential Reference seeking interpretation of Article 63A of the Constitution.

A five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, and comprising Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan, Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel, Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail was hearing this matter.

The PTI on Monday filed a Civil Miscellaneous Application (CMA) through advocate Babar Awan, which stated that the five-member bench, which is hearing the Reference, has already heard and decided suo moto on Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri Ruling on no-confidence motion against ex-PM Imran Khan and passed short order on 07.04.2022. President Arif Alvi on March 21 had filed the reference under Article 186 of the Constitution to obtain the opinion of the Supreme Court on questions of law of public importance.

Apex Court takes decision due to non-availability of bench

The Reference mentioned that while choosing their representatives for the National and Provincial Assemblies, the voters evaluate different candidates on the basis of political ideology and manifesto of the party to which the candidates belong. They primarily vote for the political parties, which eventually form government at the national and/or provincial level. The credentials of the individual candidate, though important, are rarely the determining factor in this exercise save in those exceptional cases where independent candidates outvote all other candidates including those contesting on party platforms. That still remains a rarity as overwhelmingly it is the party vote bank which propels the majority of the candidates to the Assemblies.