ISLAMABAD-The Islamabad High Court will today (Thursday) conduct hearing in a petition against the appointment of two members of the Election Commission of Pakistan.

A single bench of the IHC comprising Chief Justice IHC Justice Athar Minallah will conduct hearing of the petition wherein it had issued notices to the respondents including secretary to the president, principal secretary to the Prime Minister, the two newly-appointed ECP members and the ECP.

The IHC bench said in its previous order that the petitioner had sought a writ in the nature of quo warranto challenging appointment of respondent No 4 and 5 as members of the ECP.

It noted, “The learned counsel has inter alia, contended that the appointments have been made through notification, dated 22-8-2019, in violation of the unambiguous constitutional provisions of Article 213 (2A) read with Article 218(2)(b) of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan 1973. The learned counsel has further stated that due to this grave illegality, the Chief Election Commissioner has refused to administer oath to respondents No 4 and 5.”

“Let notice be issued to the respondents for filing report and parawise comments within a fortnight. The office is further directed to issue notice to the learned Attorney General of Pakistan,” said the court order.

After issuing abovementioned directions, the court had deferred hearing till September 12 in this matter.

The petitioner Jahangir Jadoon advocate challenged the notification of appointment of Khalid Mehmood Siddiqui and Munir Ahmed Kakar as members of the ECP.

According to the petition, President Dr Arif Alvi invoked his discretionary powers to appoint both the members while bypassing mandatory consultation of the prime minister and leader of the opposition in the National Assembly.

Subsequently, the petitioner prayed to the court to set aside the notification issued on August 22.

He made secretary to the president, principal secretary to Prime Minister, Chief Election Commissioner, ministry for law and justice and both the member-designate as respondents.

The CEC Justice (R) Sardar Raza Khan has already declined to administer oath to both of them. The petitioner also requested to hold implementation of notification issued by Ministry for Parliamentary Affairs regarding appointment of ECP members for Sindh and Balochistan.

The parliamentary affairs ministry had notified the appointment of Khalid Mehmood Siddiqui and Munir Ahmed Kakar as the ECP members from Sindh and Balochistan respectively after President Arif Alvi’s approval.