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IHC dismisses PTI plea seeking acceptance of MNA in one go

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  • IHC also dismisses plea seeking formation of larger bench in case.
  • PTI wanted the resignations of all its 123 MNAs to be accepted.
  • IHC declares Suri’s order of accepting resignations as null and void.

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) Tuesday dismissed a PTI plea seeking the acceptance of the party’s members of the National Assembly in one go.

IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard the case filed by the PTI challenging the acceptance of resignations of 11 MNAs and not accepting a “piece-meal” resignation of all 123 lawmakers.

The IHC CJ declared former NA deputy speaker Qasim Suri’s resignation acceptance order void and ordered every MNA to appear before the NA speaker in person to get their resignation accepted.

IHC CJ Minallah also rejected PTI lawyer Faisal Chaudhry’s plea to take up the case with a larger bench.

Two days after PTI Chairman Imran Khan was ousted as the prime minister — through a no-confidence motion moved by the then-opposition — all PTI MNAs resigned en masse on April 11.

Suri — who was performing his duties as the acting NA speaker after Asad Qaiser resigned as the speaker — had accepted all the resignations on April 15.

However, once Raja Pervez Ashraf was appointed as the speaker, he decided to verify the resignations of all MNAs by interviewing them individually.

The decision was taken after reports that several resignations submitted by the lawmakers were typed and not handwritten — which is against the NA’s rules.

PTI’s petition

PTI Secretary-General Asad Umar — on behalf of his party — had filed a plea in the IHC on August 1 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 are declared vacant.

Asad, in the petition filed through his counsel Shoaib Shaheen, stated the PTI MNAs had tendered their resignation after the no-confidence vote, and Shah Mahmood Qureshi announced the decision.

The then-deputy speaker Qasim Suri had accepted the resignations, the petitioner stated, contending that the sitting speaker has no authority to delay the acceptance of resignations.

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

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Explanation: The increase in inflation in the United States would cause electricity costs in Pakistan to rise.

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Electricity contracts between Independent Power Plants (IPPs) and the federal government not only involve capacity costs, but also have a significant impact on the economy and the financial well-being of the population. These contracts are closely linked to the inflation rate and the value of the US dollar.

Startling disclosures have emerged regarding the exorbitant electricity tariffs in Pakistan. The Council of Economic and Energy Journalists Sage, representing the institute, provided a briefing to leading journalists in Karachi.

According to the information provided, the electricity rate component in Pakistan experienced a 253 percent increase from 2019 to 2024 as a result of inflation in America.

The data presented in the briefing indicates that the capacity charges in Pakistan were Rs3.26 per unit in 2019 and climbed to Rs10.34 per unit in 2024.

The capacity charges imposed on the public incorporate the effects of both US inflation and domestic inflation.

Due to the rise in the country’s interest rate, the interest payment for energy has climbed by 343% during a span of four years. Over the course of four years, the working capital of IPPs caused a 716 percent increase in the cost of power per unit.

The electricity rate has increased by 12 to 20 percent, with 70 percent of the charges being capacity charges.

SDPI experts recommended the government to adopt a centralised tariff policy rather than a universal electricity tariff strategy.

The power generation capacity amounts to 23,000 megawatts.

As a result of the increase in solar power generation in the country, the capacity charges will have an additional adverse impact on the residents.

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Business

Significant surge in the price of gold in Pakistan

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On Friday, the price of gold in Pakistan continued to increase.

According to the All-Pakistan Gems and Jewellers Sarafa Association, the price of 24-karat gold per tola has risen by Rs2,200, reaching Rs249,000.

The price of 10-gram 24-karat gold increased by Rs1,886, reaching a total of Rs213,477. On Thursday, the cost of 10 grammes of 22-karat gold was Rs195,687.

The global gold market likewise had a rising trajectory. As per APGJSA, the worldwide rate was $2,404 per ounce, showing a decline of $24 during the course of the trading day.

The local market witnessed constant silver prices at Rs2,900 per tola.

Market observers attribute the increase in gold prices to other variables, such as volatility in the global market, currency exchange rates, and economic conditions. The ongoing surge in gold prices is likely to impact investment choices and consumer behaviour in the near future.

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Court ruling: PTI to overtake all other parties in the National Assembly

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Eight independents and 84 Sunni Alliance members mean that the PTI will likely have 92 legislators in the National Assembly, according to sources.

PTI’s strength in the Lower House is expected to surge to 114 members if it regains the 22 reserved seats it previously lost.

As for the PML-N, they have 108 members in the National Assembly; PPP has 68; MQM has 21; JUI-F has 8; PML-Q has 5; and IPP has 4.

Following the Supreme Court’s ruling on the distribution of reserved seats, the 77 extra seats meant for women and minorities were taken away from the PML-N, PPP, MQM, and JUI.

The electoral commission had on May 13 suspended the 77 Sunni Ittehad Council reserved seats on directives from the Supreme Court. 22 National Assembly seats and 55 provincial assembly seats are among the contested seats.

There are eleven seats from Punjab and eight from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the National Assembly that are up for debate among women. The suspended seats also include three seats that are designated for minorities. In the National Assembly, the PPP received five seats, the JUI received three, and the PML-N received fourteen of the 22 heavily contested seats.

There are no longer any allocated seats for minorities or women in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, with 21 seats for women. In addition to the JUI-F, the PML-N was allotted seven seats, the PPP seven, and the ANP one.

The Supreme Court’s decision has suspended the three minority seats and the 24 reserved seats for women in the Punjab Assembly. The PML-N received 23, the PPP received 2, the PML-Q received 1, and the Istehkam-e-Pakistan Party received 1 in Punjab.

There are now no longer any designated seats in the Sindh Assembly for women and minorities. MQM was allotted one reserved seat out of these, and the PPP two.

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