ISLAMABAD: A day after rejecting PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s petition alleging foul play in the general elections on a National Assembly seat in Mansehra he lost to PTI-backed candidate, the electoral entity on Friday, admitted his petition after it was refiled.

Sharif’s counsel Advocate Jehangir Jadoon appeared before a three-member ECP bench that heard the case, alleging that the results of Form 45 of certain polling stations of NA-15 Mansehra did not match the results of Form 47. He urged the bench to order a vote recount in NA-15.

The ECP bench informed the counsel that the returning officer (RO) of NA-15 submitted his report regarding general elections on the said seat, and that the RO’s report showed that the Form 45 results of all polling stations of NA-15 matched with that of Form 47.

The prosecution side claimed they will prove that NA-15 general elections had serious irregularities. The bench accepted the petition and fixed the case for regular hearing on February 20.

Earlier, in the hearing of this case on Thursday, the RO of NA-15 Mansehra submitted his report which stated that the result of the entire NA-15 constituency was correct, in accordance with Forms 45.

On the other hand, Sharif’s counsel, who had challenged the result of NA-15 in the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on behalf of the former prime minister, did not show up at the hearing.

The ECP bench dismissed the case, rejecting the prosecution side’s application to hold the notification of the returned candidate of NA-15.

After the petition was dismissed, the defence lawyer showed up at the hearing with the request not to reject the petition. The bench was of the view that the petitioner could file another petition if they had any reservations on the rejection of this petition.

Independent candidate backed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Shahzada Gustasip bagged 105,249 votes, defeating Sharif, who received 80,382 votes in NA-15 Mansehra in February 8 general elections. Sharif has since moved ECP, challenging the NA-15 results.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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