ISLAMABAD: A three-member bench of the Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed PTI Chief Imran Khan’s review petition for disqualification of MNA Ayesha Gulalai.
The PTI chairman had filed a review petition with the apex court against an earlier verdict of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) which ruled that Gulalai would remain a member of the National Assembly from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).
Gulalai had announced to quit the party in early August, last year, after levelling allegations of harassment and corruption against the PTI chief.
Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar was presiding over the bench which included Justice Umar Ata Bandial and Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan.
Hearing the petition today, Justice Nisar inquired Imran’s lawyer Sikandar Buksh if Gulalai had submitted a written resignation to which the former responded in negative.
Buksh argued that Gulalai had announced her decision to quit the party during a press conference and further said that she had violated the party’s constitution by not voting in the prime ministerial election.
Justice Nisar then inquired if the party chief, himself, had cast his vote in the same poll. The lawyer responded that Imran had not been in the city when the poll had taken place.
“What if Gulalai says the same; that she was not in the city when the election was held?” responded the chief justice.
Buksh argued that there were legal flaws in the ECP’s verdict.
Responding to the Buksh’s argument of the defendant’s announcement to resign from the party, Justice Ahsan cited a similar announcement from Awami Muslim League (AML) Chief Sheikh Rashid.
“Sheikh Rashid had also announced his resignation but did that announcement make the resignation effective?” Justice Ahsan stated. “Political leaders often make such statements.”
On August 28, Imran Khan had sent a notice to Gulalai stating that she has defected from the party in terms of Article 63 A (1) of the Constitution.
The notice states that Gulalai on August 1 publically resigned from the party, did not vote for the party’s designated candidate in the prime minister’s elections.
Gulalai had announced to quit the party in early August after levelling allegations of harassment and corruption against the PTI chief.