ISLAMABAD  - Since the government and opposition factions could not reach a consensus for the appointment of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) due to some legal hitches, Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah is awaiting Prime Minister’s special interest to fill the slot like other top vacant posts filled quite recently.

“Ball is in the government’s court to resolve the pending issue. Now, Prime Minister’s intervention is needed to resolve this issue,” Khursheed said in an exclusive talk with The Nation on Monday.

The process of appointing CEC has hit snags as both opposition and government benches in the Upper House could not evolve a consensus over the name of Justice (r) BaghwanDas, former chairman Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC).

When contacted, senior PPP Senator Farhatullah Babar said that the amendment bill relating to FPSC rules was not passed in Senate due to legal hitches. “Simply the law doesn’t permit it,” he said in clear terms about impendent in the Upper of House of the parliament.

However, the government side is hopeful to fill this important slot soon. “The appointment of CEC is in the notice of government and the government side is deliberating to fill the slot like other important slots filled recently,” Finance Minister Ishaq Dar told The Nation.

It is relevant to mention here that due to continuing disagreement between the government and opposition over the name of chief election commissioner the deadline of March 19 set by Supreme Court has already expired.

Earlier, the PML-N government paving the way to appoint Rana Bhagwandas on the post of Chief Election Commissioner (CEC), had got passed ‘The Federal Public Service Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2014’ in the Lower House with certain amendment.

The proposed amendment clearly allows reappointment of the former FPSC chairman only to constitutional office whereas the bar on his reappointment in other services would stay.

The office of the CEC had fallen vacant when Justice (Retd) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim had resigned in July last year.

Political pundits are of the view that the government is deliberately delaying the process of appointing a CEC in order to avoid the verification of thumb impression.

It is to be mentioned here that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) has time and again asked the authorities for verification of thumb impression done during the last general elections.