LAHORE: A total of 2,951 votes of Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) will decide the fate of 46 candidates vying for its 22-member body for 2016-17 on Monday (today).
More than 2,000 lawyers from Punjab will exercise their right to vote, out of which 1,274 lawyers alone belong to Lahore while 169 voters are from Balochistan, 283 from K-P and 485 from Sindh. Hence, the victory of any candidate rests heavily on Punjab’s provincial chapter.
The candidates are contesting for the slots of president, four vice-presidents (one for each province), a secretary, an additional secretary and a finance secretary. With the support of Asma Jahangir’s group and Ahsan Boon’s group, Farooq Hamid Naek, the former PPP law minister and senator, is vying for the top slot while the group led by Hamid Khan has nominated Rasheed A Rizvi for the same post.
Rasheed Rizvi is a former judge of Sindh High Court, who refused to take oath under the first Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) of General (retd) Pervez Musharraf. Leading lawyers like Ali Ahmed Kurd, Munir A Malik and Ahmed Awais are in full support of Rasheed, while Yasin Azad and Azam Nazir are siding with Naek.
On the other hand, the group of PML-N lawyers, headed by Advocate Naseer Bhutta, are a confused whether to go for the PPP candidate or the one fielded by PTI.
For the slot of secretary, two candidates, both from Lahore, will battle it out. Aftab Ahmed Bajwa — supported by Hamid Khan’s group — will contest elections on the same seat he lost last year. While his opponent, Safdar Hussain Tarar, is supported by different prominent groups in Lahore and Karachi.
For the four slots of vice-presidents, one for each province, Bakhtiar Ali Sial and Muhammad Tariq Malik are running from Punjab; Jafar Raza Khan and Wasim Khan Jadoon from Balochistan; Ghulam Shabbir Shar, Muhammad Suhail Hayat Khan Rana and Shaleek Ahmed from Sindh; while Muhammad Ajmal Khan, Muhammad Habib Qureshi and Tehmina Mohibullah from K-P are contesting the bar elections.
Chaudhary Muhammad Aslam Ghumman and Raja Ghazanfar Ali Khan are fighting for the post of additional secretary while, three candidates are in the race for the slot of finance secretary. The candidates include Arshad Zaman Kayani, Ghulam Muhammad Chaudhary and Mehmood Ahmed Shah.
Four candidates from Balochistan, as many from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), 13 from Punjab and six from Sindh are contesting the elections to become members of the executive committee.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 29th, 2016.
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