Hyderabad, Sindh High Court Circuit Bench Hyderabad suspended on Tuesday an order of Election Commission of Pakistan of disqualifying a candidate Ms. Waheeda Shah who had contested the by-election for PS-53 Tando Muhammad Khan. The court also stayed holding of by-polls on April 26.
Deputy Attorney General Muhammad Ali represented the Election Commission while Haider Imam Razvi was the counsel of Ms. Waheeda Shah Bukhari.
Waheeda Shah’s lawyer argued before the court that according to many earlier verdicts of Supreme Court and Sindh High Court, the punishment given by Election Commission has no legal validity.
Referring to an incident of slapping an assistant presiding officer by Ms. Waheeda Shah at polling station No:16 during the by-election, the lawyer said that the incident was result of misunderstanding and the assistant presiding officer Ms. Shagufta Hashim Memon had forgiven Ms. Waheeda Shah. He continued that Returning Officer Ali Asghar Siyal had also announced unofficial results of election on February 25, 2012 according to which Ms. Waheeda Shah had won the polls by securing 30131 votes.
The lawyer further argued that the Returning Officer had the judicial powers but he didn’t exercise it on polling day and instead punished the winning candidate on February 27 and again gave decision on March 5 and 7 without ascertaining the facts, which is illegal.
After hearing the arguments, Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi and Justice Nisar Ahmed Shaikh suspended the disqualification orders of Election Commission and stayed the by-polls scheduled for February and fixed the next date of hearing for May 16, 2012.