Time limit : IHC rejects Imran’s plea for larger bench

PTI chief maintains stipulated time to hear reference had expired, hence reference invalid


Our Correspondent February 25, 2017
PTI chief maintains stipulated time to hear reference had expired, hence reference invalid. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday rejected an application filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan to form a larger bench to hear his petition which challenges a disqualification reference pending against him in the election commission.

A single bench comprising IHC Chief Justice Anwar Khan Kasi rejected Imran’s application. The verdict in the case had been reserved on Thursday.

Babar Awan, the counsel representing Imran, had maintained that there were various examples where a larger bench had been formed to adjudicate constitutional matters.

Deputy Attorney General Fazlur Rehman, however, had opposed the plea and requested the court to dismiss it.

In the main petition pending before the bench of Justice Aamir Farooq, the PTI chief had requested the court to nullify a disqualification reference pending against him with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

Imran had argued that the ECP was bound to decide the reference against him within 90 days. However, the top poll authority had lost jurisdiction to pursue the reference since it failed to do so within the stipulated time frame. The ECP official had countered Imran’s argument by stating that there were constitutional provisions which allowed the poll authority to take up matters not completed on time.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 25th, 2017.

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