ISLAMABAD - A division bench of Islamabad High Court (IHC) Monday told a PTI petitioner to file application with the election commission for uploading of Form 14 that contains results of every polling station from an electoral constituency on the official website of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

The bench comprising Justice Noorul Haq N Qureshi and Justice Athar Minallah observed that the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) should trust and respect the institutions and directed the petitioner to file a formal request before the ECP.

The bench added that in case their request is not entertained, they can file a petition before the high court. The bench further observed that the petitioner needs to file an application before the ECP and do the same through a legal notice.

PTI through its additional general secretary Saifullah Khan Niazi had filed the petition seeking directions from the court to ECP for publishing/uploading Form 14 on its official website that contains detailed results of every polling station from an electoral constituency. The petitioner adopted before the court that a presiding officer dispatches a detailed results of a polling station to the ECP under Public Representation Act, Section 38, Sub-section 9 that is form 14. He maintained that under the said Act, every citizen has a right to access that form.

During the hearing, Justice Athar inquired from the petitioner that under what law it is binding on ECP to publish the said form. The judge said if the constitution does not permit something then PTI should bring an amendment in the law through parliament.

Justice Qureshi asked from the PTI counsel Shoaib advocate that if the petitioner has contacted ECP in this regard. The counsel said they had served ECP a legal notice on October 21. At this instance the IHC bench directed the petitioner to file an application before the ECP as per rules.

The IHC bench observed that Chief Election Commissioner has been a judge of Supreme Court and the petitioner should have trust in him. The bench directed the counsel to seek more advice from his client and adjourned the hearing in this matter with date in office. In its petition, PTI had argued that they had pointed out several discrepancies and irregularities in the electoral process that had happened during the general elections of 2013 and they also lodged a countrywide protest. PTI in this regard also served a legal notice to the ECP requesting the institution to publish Forms 14 on its official website regarding the general elections of 2013 for all constituencies of national and provincial assemblies. The petitioner told that ECP till this date has not responded to their legal notice.

Not publishing Form 14 is a violation of fundamental right to information that is guaranteed under Article 19-A of the constitution.