Tuesday saw the submission of a petition for review by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), which contested the revocation of their “bat” symbol by the Supreme Court.
The political party petitions the Peshawar High Court to overturn its ruling and allow the symbol to be utilized again in intra-party elections. The opposition faction draws attention to discrepancies within the legal proceedings and asserts that it was dealt unfairly by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
The petition asserts that the selection of the party leadership was carried out via intra-party elections that adhered to the party’s constitution. Furthermore, it argues that the ECP lacks the authority to investigate internal election matters and should not have intervened in the previous decision of the Peshawar High Court, which affirmed the legitimacy of the “bat” symbol.
The ECP, according to the PTI, “utilized every available method to exclude them from the general elections” through any means possible. The petition details specific occurrences in which party candidates or their seconders were allegedly “abducted” by individuals clad in plain clothing during broad daylight, preventing them from submitting nomination papers. This conduct suggests deliberate attempts to hinder their ability to engage.
The parties emphasize the need for the ECP to establish an equitable environment and urge the court to impose liability on the commission for its conduct. In contrast to confronting the responsible parties, the election commission is initiating legal proceedings and subsequently incarcerating Imran Khan, the founder of the PTI.
The authors argue that the ECP’s decision to eliminate the symbol violates the fundamental rights of the party and its adherents, citing provisions in the Pakistani constitution concerning the capacity to establish political parties and engage in electoral processes.
The petition posits that the ECP exceeded its jurisdiction in withdrawing the symbol and that the Supreme Court neglected to conduct a comprehensive analysis of the facts concerning the intra-party elections. The petition argued that the act of eliminating election symbols from the property of any political party violates the voters’ fundamental rights. It filed a petition seeking the annulment of the ECP’s decision to withdraw the election symbol.
The PTI has named all parties concerned in the High Court case, including the ECP, as parties in its petition for review. On behalf of the party, senior advocates Hamid Khan and Barrister Ali Zafar are representing the legal challenge.
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) suffered a substantial setback on January 13, when the ruling of the Peshawar High Court, which had reinstated the party’s emblematic cricket bat, was overturned by the Supreme Court.
The apex court issued its ruling in response to accusations of irregularities in the internal elections of the PTI that were held the previous year. The allegations were rejected by the Peshawar High Court, which subsequently reinstated the bat symbol. As a result, the Supreme Court deemed the elections “unconstitutional” and nullified the symbol.
Chief Justice of Pakistan Qazi Faez Isa stated in his verdict that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) had received an overwhelming number of complaints regarding the PTI-conducted intra-party elections.