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PTI’s return to NA: LHC declares acceptance of 72 MNAs resignations ‘invalid’

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  • 72 PTI MNAs to appear before NA speaker to withdraw resignations.
  • Khan’s return to Parliament to bring about ‘real democracy’: lawyer.
  • [We have] pinned all hopes on Raja Pervez Ashraf: Riaz Fatyana.

The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday declared “null and void” the acceptance of the resignations of 72 Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) members of the National Assembly, including Fawad Chaudhry, Hammad Azhar, and Shah Mehmood Qureshi.

The petition against the acceptance of the resignations was filed by former MNA Riaz Fatyana and was heard by Justice Shahid Karim of the LHC.

During the hearing, Justice Karim declared that the acceptance of the resignations by the NA Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf and the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) was “invalid”.

A court had directed the 72 members to appear before the NA speaker to withdraw their resignations and instructed the NA speaker to take a decision after hearing all the members again.

The notifications of accepting the resignations of Shafqat Mahmood and Fatyana were also declared “null and void”.

‘Historic decision’

Speaking to media personnel outside the LHC, PTI lawyer Barrister Ali Zafar said that the court had given a “historic decision”.

“With this decision, the [country’s] political crisis will also be resolved,” he declared.

He said that the court had accepted the petition against the de-notification of PTI MNA, who would now appear before the speaker.

He further added that after appearing in the inquiry, the MNAs would retract their resignations.

“Once the ECP’s de-notification is retracted, these MNA’s will be able to join the National Assembly,” he shared.

He further said that with the reversal of the resignations, PTI Chairman Imran Khan would be able to “play his role for the nation as the opposition leader in Parliament.”

“It is hoped that the speaker will complete the inquiry as per the law and allow the PTI MNAs to return [to the assembly],” he said.

‘Step towards democracy’

The former MNA, while addressing the media outside the provincial top court said that the court’s decision was a “positive step towards the constitution and democracy”.

There is no democracy without opposition, Fatyana said, adding that the PTI’s return to Parliament would bring back “real democracy” to the country.

“Pervez Ashraf is the custodian of entire House and does not represent any party,” he said, adding, “[We have] pinned all our hopes on Raja Pervez Ashraf.”

The resignation saga

The MNAs were among the lawmakers who had resigned after the PTI-led government was ousted via a no-confidence motion in April last year.

Back then, the PTI had claimed that resignations were accepted by former deputy speaker Qasim Suri in the absence of a speaker after Asad Qaiser’s resignation.

Speaker Ashraf, after his election, approved the resignations of 11 PTI lawmakers in July 2022. He had stalled the process stating the remaining lawmakers would be summoned individually for verification.

However, contrary to his stance, he quickened the process once PTI in January announced its return to the assembly and “test” the PM through a confidence vote.

The PTI resignations were accepted by NA speaker Ashraf in four stages: 11 in the first phase, while 35, 34, and 43 in the second, third, and fourth phases, respectively.

However, several PTI lawmakers challenged the decision in the LHC.

The high court, while suspending the ECP notification had also stayed the by-elections on 43 constituencies till further notice.

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PTI is given further time by the ECP to provide documents in the intra-party election case.

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Following an intra-party elections case, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was given an extension by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Tuesday to submit its paperwork.

Hearings were held on the PTI intra-party election case before a three-member bench chaired by Sindh ECP member Nisar Durrani.

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa ECP member questioned who oversaw the PTI elections as it wasn’t an organization.

Regarding the PTI’s recent election, the ECP voiced no objections. Barrister Gohar, the Chief of PTI, replied, “We plan to address a few legal and technical queries given enough time.”

During the raid on the PTI Central Secretariat, he claimed that the police had seized everything, including crucial party records, and that they had not even left a “water dispenser.”

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The PTI has filed a petition with the Lahore High Court to seek permission for holding a protest at Minar-e-Pakistan on August 14.

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In its appeal, PTI said that there will be no unlawful activity during the gathering, which they intended to hold on August 14 at Minar-e-Pakistan.

Permission from the court to hold the rally at Minar-e-Pakistan was requested.

PTI also asked for an injunction to stop harassing the petitioner and their family.

Notifying the Deputy Commissioner and other relevant parties, the court requested their comments. There was a one-week delay in the heating.

Note that the administration was also ordered by the Islamabad High Court to hold talks with the PTI in order to arrange a public gathering.

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The chairman of PTI, Barrister Gohar, and Raoof Hasan have been arrested.

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Senator Shibli Faraz of the PTI alleged on Monday that the Islamabad Capital Territory Police (ICT) surrounded the PTI secretariat in Islamabad and apprehended PTI chairman Barrister Gohar and party spokesperson Rauf Hasan.

A substantial group of law enforcement officers arrived outside the PTI secretariat, accompanied by female police personnel.

Shibli Faraz alleged that the chairman of PTI and Rauf Hasan were apprehended by the ICT Police.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Central Secretariat was sealed by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) on May 24. The operation, carried out in cooperation with the district administration, featured anti-encroachment teams armed with heavy machinery that were deployed at the location situated in Sector G-84.

As to a representative from the CDA, the specific plot was assigned to an individual named Sartaj Ali. Nevertheless, instances of non-compliance with building regulations, such as the erection of an extra level, were observed. Additionally, it was stated that the political party had unlawfully occupied the neighboring acreage.

The Islamabad High Court issued a directive on June 4, instructing authorities to promptly remove the seal from Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s headquarters office in the federal capital, Islamabad.

Justice Thaman Rifat Imtiaz of the Islamabad High Court has delivered a ruling that was previously kept undisclosed. The court granted PTI’s case against the Capital Development Authority CDA.

On June 3, the Islamabad High Court deferred its verdict regarding the appeal against sealing the central secretariat of PTI and the CDA operation.

On May 27, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) dismissed the objection raised by the registrar’s office about the case filed by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). The petition was against the closure of the party’s central secretariat and the actions of the Capital Development Authority (CDA). The instruction was given.

The PTI leader filed a petition seeking the annulment of the CDA’s order to seal the Central Secretariat.

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