LAHORE - 7The annual election of Supreme Court Bar Association will be held today (Wednesday). As many as 3,047 members will exercise their right to vote in all the four provinces. Election board chief Chaudhry Afrasiab will conduct the polling from 9am to 5pm.

The major contestants are Independent Group of late Asma Jahanigr and Professional Group of Hamid Khan. Ali Ahmad Kurd has been fielded by Asma Jahangir’s Independent group while Amanullah Kanrani is the candidate of Hamid Khan’s professional group – Both are from Baluchistan province as per rotation policy.

Kurd, former president of SCBA, played a pivotal role in 2007 lawyers’ movement for the restoration of judiciary and democracy.

Previously, he was backed by Hamid Khan-led group but now he has been nominated by the Independent Group. He also served as vice chairman of Pakistan Bar Council, the top regulatory body of lawyers. Among lawyers’ wings of political parties, PML-N lawyers are backing Kurd while lawyer forums of PTI, PPP and JI are supporting Kanrani.

Another group known as Reformers Group that was formed by removed judges of PCO regime, has also announced its full support for Kanrani. Former LHC judge Syed Shabbar Raza Rizvi has been heading the group.

Kanrani is contesting election on the slot of president for the second time as he had lost his previous election to Kamran Murtaza in 2013.

Shamimur Rehman Malik of Professional Group and Azmatullah Chaudhry of Independent Group are in run for the slot of secretary. PML-N lawyers’ forum is divided on the secretary’s slot as many of its members have been canvassing for Malik.

For the slot of vice presidents one each from every province, there are eight candidates. Kamran Ali Malik and Tayyab Nasir Jafri are from Punjab, Naseebullah Achakzai and Syed Saleem Akhter from Baluchistan, Khaleeq Ahmad and Salahuddin Khan Gandapur from Sindh while Khalid Anwar Afridi and Khan Afzal Khan from KP.

For one slot of additional secretary, Ahsan Hameed Lilla, Javed Masood Tahir and Kazi Sheharyar Iqbal are in run. Ali Ahmad Khan Rana and Mehmood Ahmad Sheikh are contesting for the slot of finance secretary.