ISLAMABAD - The Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi Bench on Tuesday has issued notices to Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on a writ petition filed by a citizen against former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan for not taking oath as a member of provincial assembly from his electoral constituency PP-10. The writ petition was filed by Chaudhry Noor Khan, a resident of Sangral, with LHC through his lawyer Asad Abbasi making the Election Commission of Pakistan, Speaker Punjab Assembly and the MPA Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan as respondents.

LHC Rawalpindi Bench Justice Mirza Waqas Rauf took up the petition and directed the ECP to submit its response within two weeks. The petition, filed by Chaudhry Noor Khan, argued that the voters of PP-10 voted Chaudhry Nisar to power but the MPA is neither taking oath nor evacuating his seat. Because of this act of Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, the residents of PP-10 have no representative in Punjab assembly. The process of development work has also been paused in PP-10, he said. He sought the court’s intervention in asking the winning candidate to take oath as MPA from PP-10 or to evacuate the seat. LHC Justice Mirza Waqas Rauf accepted the plea and issued notices to ECP seeking its response.

Earlier, the petition of Chaudhry Noor Khan was dismissed by LHC Rawalpindi Justice Malik Shehzad Ahmed Khan Gheba who took up the petition during which Asad Abbasi argued before the court that MPA Chauhdry Nisar had bagged victory from PP-10 in general elections 2018 but he had not taken oath so far. The lawyer added that the court should order the MPA to take oath or evacuate the seat so that the by-elections could be held for solving problems of voters of the said constituency.

LHC Justice Malik Shehzad Ahmed Khan Gheba asked the lawyer whether the constitution of Pakistan, ECP or any other law restricted an elected MP from taking oath in a specific time frame. Justice Gheba rejected the petition and remarked, “There is no law in the constitution which binds public elected representatives to take oath in a limited time period.”