PTI challenges by-polls on 3 vacant NA seats at PHC

Humayun Khan
PESHAWAR: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has challenged by-polls on three National Assembly (NA) constituencies of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa scheduled on 30th April before Peshawar High Court (PHC).
The petition was filed by PTI former Members NA including Ali Muhammad Khan, Fazal Muhammad Khan and Shaukat Ali while Barrister Gohar Ali Khan will represent petitioners before High Court. The petition stated that PTI MNAs resigned from membership following voting of no confidence against the then Prime Minister Imran which is accepted on 28th July 2022 while Election Commission of Pakistan has held by-polls on the vacant constituencies.
PTI chairman contested by-election from seven constituencies while retained one seat and made vacant other six seats while ECP scheduled by-polls on the three positions on 30th April, the added. By-polls shouldn’t be held less than 120 days before General Election which will be reach on 14th April, the petition added.
The petition stated that by-elections will not only be a waste of money but also be a deviation from the Constitution. It further stated that many other constitutional problems were likely to arise from following the schedule as well.
The party also maintained that the resignations were never individually verified, thereby expressing reservations over the acceptance of the resignations that had left the National Assembly seats vacant in the first place.
It is worthy to mention that earlier the ECP had called off by-elections in 37 National Assembly constituencies in light of the decisions of the concerned high courts. The by-elections had been triggered after National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf had accepted the resignations of PTI lawmakers earlier this year.
A total of 123 PTI MNAs resigned en masse on April 11 last year two days after party Chairman Imran Khan was removed from the post of the prime minister through a no-confidence vote. On January 17, the speaker accepted the resignations of 34 PTI lawmakers, and one member of the Awami League (AML), an ally of the PTI. Three days later, 35 more resignations were accepted, including one of AML chief Sheikh Rashid. On January 25, the ECP de-notified 43 PTI lawmakers and two days later announced the by-elections to 33 National Assembly seats on March 16. It also announced 31 more by-polls for March 19 in February.