The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday set aside the Punjab Election Appellate Tribunal’s decision disqualifying former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for life for not being ‘honest’ and ‘sagacious’, and barring him from contesting the election from his native NA-57 (Rawalpindi-I) constituency.
The decision of the two-judge bench headed by Justice Mazahir Ali Akbar Naqvi, which was hearing the former PM’s plea today, cleared the way for Abbasi to contest the election from NA-57.
The Returning Officer submitted his reply to court today in the judge’s chambers.
Abbasi’s lawyer told the court today that responses had been provided to all questions asked in the nomination papers.
Despite all the details being furnished, a decision was made contrary to the law, Abbasi’s counsel said, adding that the ex-PM had declared the value of all his assets.
Abbasi said he had invested Rs1 million in Murree’s Blue Pines Hotel.
He contended that the tribunal had overstepped its jurisdiction, since it only had powers to either accept or reject nomination papers, and lacked the authority to disqualify lawmakers for life.
The court subsequently set aside the tribunal’s decision.
Fawad Chaudhry to contest from NA-67
The LHC also set aside an appellate tribunal’s verdict barring Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Fawad Chaudhry for life from contesting elections from NA-67 (Jhelum).
The Justice Naqvi-headed bench gave Chaudhry permission to contest the election.
The petitioner said that although the RO had accepted the nomination papers, the appellate tribunal had rejected them.
Chaudhry said that according to the tribunal, the details of Rs3.2m expenditure on foreign trips had not been furnished and asset details were not provided.
The appellant maintained that a Federal Board of Revenue certified copy of details was attached to the nomination papers but this was ignored by the tribunal and he had then been disqualified for life.
Chaudhry requested the court to set aside the tribunal’s verdict and grant him permission to contest the election. Subsequently, the LHC set aside the decision and gave him the green light to contest from NA-67.