Three PML-N leaders, including party chief Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz, have been told to respond to allegations that they violated the election code of conduct by leading a rally that obstructed traffic.
District Returning Officer Nazir Ahmad Gajana issued notices to Maryam Nawaz, Bilal Yaseen and Mian Marghoob on Saturday, summoning them for April 30. The officer had earlier issued notices to Imran Khan and Abdul Aleem of Tehreek-i-Insaf for similar alleged violations.
According to a report submitted by the monitoring team for NA-120, some 300 PML-N workers gathered at Kasurpura on April 24 and then marched in a procession to Malipura, led by Nawaz, Yaseen and Marghoob.
The route of the rally was not authorised and it was an inconvenience to the general public as it held up traffic, according to the monitoring report.
The PML-N rally allegedly violated Sections 34, 38 and 39 of the Election Commission of Pakistan’s code of conduct. The PML-N leaders have been asked to appear in person before the district returning officer on April 30 and explain why legal action should not be taken against then under the Representation of the People Act 1976 and other election rules, according to the notice.
PTI chief Imran Khan and PTI Lahore President Abdul Aleem Khan have also been accused of violating Articles 38 and 39 of the code of conduct in leading a rally on The Mall on April 20.
Code of conduct
The political parties and candidates shall hold public rallies and processions only at the place or places through the routes specified for the purpose. Such places and routes shall be pre-determined in every city and town by the district/local administration in consultation with the candidates or their authorised representatives and be notified for public information.
Car rallies are not allowed to travel long distances except if the political parties, candidates or their supporters have pre-arranged corner meetings at specific designated places.
The organisers, in consultation with the district administration, shall take steps in advance to arrange for passage of the procession so that there is no blockage of or hindrance to traffic.
If the procession is very long, it shall be organised in segments of suitable lengths, so that at convenient intervals, especially at points where the procession has to pass road junctions, the passage of held-up traffic can be allowed by stages, thus avoiding heavy traffic congestion and inconvenience to the general public.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 28th, 2013.
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