Can’t allow disqualified person to ‘act as a puppet master’: SC

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court of Pakistan has released a detailed verdict on Friday concerning its order passed over a petition challenging Elections Act 2017.

The 51-page order written by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Saqib Nisar states that supplementary legislation to amend Constitution of Pakistan to elect a disqualified lawmaker as party head is illegal. It is not permitted by the law to legislate either to favour a personality orby-pass the constitution, the order reads.

The order states: “To hold that a person who is disqualified to be king can nevertheless be given a freehand to operate as a kingmaker, who may despite lacking qualification and without going through the electoral process, act as a puppet master pull the strings and exercise political power vicariously would amount to making a complete mockery of the Constitution”

The top court has ruled that Political Parties Act 2002 was enacted at the time when Nawaz Sharif was disqualified under Article 62(1) F of the constitution on July 28, 2017. Enactment of Elections Act 2017 does not rule out ban on a disqualified lawmaker to serve as head of a political party, the CJP has stated.

The apex court has stated that appointment of Nawaz Sharif on October 3, 2017 as president of a political party again was illegal.

“It has vehemently been argued that Sections 203 & 232 of Election Act, 2017 in their existing form have been inserted in order to favour and benefit one particular individual,” the court ruled today.