The Supreme Court on Monday restored the membership of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz MPA Chaudhry Hanif Jutt who was disqualified by the election tribunal in Multan for holding a fake degree.
The three judge bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali heard Chaudhry Hanif’s appeal against the election tribunal’s decision.
During the proceeding, Hanif’s attorney contended that his client’s degree was verified by the top education regulatory body, the Higher Education Commission. Therefore, his client’s membership as a legislator should be restored, he asserted.
In 2014, an election tribunal had disqualified the ruling party lawmaker for holding a fake degree and subsequently directed the poll body to conduct by-poll in PP-226 (Chichawatni) within 90 days.
Hanif’s rival in the constituency had challenged his degree. In his plea before the election tribunal Saqib Gujjar, an independent candidate had alleged that Hanif’s law degree was fake. After probing the allegations, the tribunal disqualified Chaudhry Hanif from this seat in the provincial legislature.
Hanif had secured 49,542 votes while Saqib Gujjar bagged 1,587.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 5th, 2016.