Elections have never been devoid of controversy in the chequered political history of Pakistan. Manipulation of national institutions to further vested interests is considered a new normal in the country. The government has deliberately dragged the Supreme Court in the upcoming Senate election. However, the Supreme Court, in its short order, has upheld the secrecy principle against an open ballot. It has clearly repudiated the stance of the government, yet the government is adamant that its political narrative stands vindicated.
There was no need to involve the SC on the question of whether the Senate elections should be held through open or secret ballot. In principle, the issue primarily falls within the ambit of the parliament where treasury and opposition members can sit and pass legislation on the issues of national importance. It is high time that the sanctity of parliament, as being a supreme institution, must be safeguarded in times of crisis. Parliamentarians should bring such issues to the supreme legislative body instead of referring to the Supreme Court.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 4th, 2021.