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ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court will take up the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)’s review petition against its order to hold elections in the Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on May 15.

A three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial and comprising Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Munib Akhtar will hear the ECP’s review petition.

The bench, on April 4, had ordered to hold Punjab provincial assembly election on May 14. It had also directed the federal government to provide Rs 21 billion for the elections to the Punjab and KP Assemblies by April 10 and make available all the necessary personnel, whether from the Armed Forces, Rangers, or the Frontier Constabulary for the security and other purposes related to the general elections.

The federal government has not provided the funds and security personnel to the Commission and has also not filed the review petition. The chief justice twice during the same day elections noted that no one has challenged their order to hold elections in the Punjab on May 14.

The ECP, in its review petition, filed on May 3, contended that the framers of the Constitution have given the judicial institution a pivotal role in safeguarding and preserving the Constitution, but have at the same defined the ambit and scope of judicial intervention under sub-article 2 of the Article 175 of the Constitution.

The Commission has asked the Court to recall its impugned judgment dated 04.04.2023, in the interest of justice and equity. It said that the superior courts of the country have been granted a special power under Article 199 and Article 184(3) of the Constitution to judicially review actions/ decisions of the public bodies. As per trite law of this land, while exercising the power of judicial review, superior courts look at the process of arriving at a decision but never substitute their own decisions in lieu of the public bodies.

This division of power between different organs, popularly known as the trichotomy of powers, is the hallmark of the Constitution and essential sine qua non for the smooth and efficient functioning of the country.

This well-embedded constitutional concept isolates the three organs from interfering and treading into the domain of the other. The judicial institution has been conferred the power to judicially review the actions and decisions of the executive while at the same time being restrained from exercising the executive authority itself.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Pakistani1 May 13, 2023 11:38am
Current Chief Justice of Supreme court has shown partiality to a specific political party through various judgements. Is he qualified to retain his post or to participate in hearing of any political cases?
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Parvez May 14, 2023 12:20am
The Constitution is very clear on the issue of holding elections. The procrastination of the SC on giving a clear decision on the breach committed by the government, makes the SC look indecisive.....not good.
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