The Election Commission of Pakistan held another meeting today to discuss the matter of awarding the electoral symbol to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) after the Peshawar High Court’s decision. However, no conclusive decision has been reached as the Election Commission continues to grapple with legal complexities surrounding the case.
The ongoing legal battle stems from the Peshawar High Court’s recent decision to declare intra-party elections of PTI null and void, consequently revoking the party’s election symbol. The Election Commission had deferred its response to the court’s decision, and the matter was scheduled for discussion in subsequent sessions.
It’s noteworthy that, just two days ago, the Peshawar High Court had declared the intra-party elections of PTI void, labeling them as unconstitutional and ordering the Election Commission to retract the party’s electoral symbol. However, the Election Commission was restrained from making a decision on PTI’s request due to a stay order issued by the Supreme Court, pending further hearings.
The Supreme Court, after receiving comprehensive arguments, decided to adjourn the case until the completion of legal formalities and instructed that the case be heard first in the double bench after the conclusion of winter vacations. This directive has put the Election Commission in a difficult position, where it has been unable to provide a definitive response to the PTI’s electoral symbol dispute.
Reacting to the Peshawar High Court’s decision, Shahbaz Sharif, the President of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), criticized the court’s interference in the Election Commission’s domain. He questioned how a provincial high court could decide matters of national significance and expressed concerns that the balance of justice might be tilting in a particular direction.
Sharif argued that the Election Commission had previously made a decision based on facts and, now, the Peshawar High Court’s ruling regarding the party symbol was akin to an attack on the Election Commission’s jurisdiction.The Election Commission’s ongoing struggle to navigate through legal intricacies and respond to the PTI’s electoral symbol dispute reflects the complexities involved in reconciling judicial decisions with electoral processes, adding an additional layer of uncertainty to the political landscape.