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LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Wednesday sought replies from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the federal government within a week on a petition challenging the powers of withdrawing the electoral symbol of a political party by the commission.

Earlier the petitioner’s counsel argued that the right to contest the election under a common symbol cannot be taken away from the candidates of a political party.

He said the ECP being a constitutional body is not a court or a tribunal, therefore, any power wrongly assumed by it for taking away fundamental rights is illegal in terms of Article 8 of the Constitution.

He asserted that the ECP had even no role in dissolution of the political parties as only the federal government had the power to declare that a political party formed or is operating in a manner prejudicial to the sovereignty or integrity of Pakistan.

The counsel argued that by denying the symbol, the party was made to cease to exist.

He said the actions of the ECP interpreting section 215 of the Act that it has the right to set aside the intra-party election and deny a party its symbol is a sheer violation of the Constitution.

The court after hearing the petitioner’s counsel at length sought replies from the respondents.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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