SHC orders recount in 15 Thatta polling stations
KARACHI, Feb 28: The Sindh High Court ordered on Thursday recount of votes cast at 15 polling stations of the provincial assembly constituency PS-87 (Thatta).
The order came on a petition moved by the Pakistan People’s Party’s Ghulam Qadir Malkani against the unofficial election of his cousin, Mohammad Ali Malkani of the Pakistan Muslim League.
He alleged that valid ballots secured by him at 15 of the 132 police stations were not only rejected but added to his rival’s tally, giving him a narrow lead in unofficial results. Advocates Raja Qureshi and Zulfiqar Noorani appeared for the petitioner and Advocates Abdul Mujeeb Pirzada and Syed Ghulam Shah for the respondent candidate. Assistant election commissioner Ataur Rehman represented the Election Commission.
A division bench comprising Justices Azizullah M. Memon and Arshad Noor Khan said in its short order: The Election Commission is hereby directed to arrange a recount of ballot papers cast at the said 15 polling stations either through the district returning officer, Thatta, or through any other responsible officer of the commission itself and the officer so recounting the ballots shall also be made responsible to consolidate e result of the fresh count, on the basis of which the successful candidates would be declared and notified.
Meanwhile, the petitions moved by five Muttahida Qaumi Movement candidates against the election of PPP’s Abdul Qadir Patel, Nadeem Bhutto and Akhtar Jadoon and Awami National Party’s Amanullah Mehsud and Amir Nawab from NA-239, PS-89, PS-90, PS-93 and PS-128 were adjourned for hearing on Friday. Advocates Abrar Hasan and Masroor Alvi appeared for petitioners K.S. Mujahid Baloch, Sardar Khan, Sheikh Mohammad Feroze, Salahuddin and Ashfaq Ahmed Mangi and Advocates Kamal Azfar, Khalid Jawed Khan and Shahadat Awan for the respondents.
The bench, meanwhile, disposed of as withdrawn petitions moved by PPP candidates Zulfiqar Behan and Qurbal Ali Behan against the unofficial election of National People’s Party’s Ghulam Murtaza Khan Jatoi and Masroor Khan Jatoi from the Naushehro Feroze constituencies of NA-211 and PS-23. Advocate Adnan Karim, the petitioners’ counsel, informed the bench that the Election Commission had taken cognizance of their complaints and they would be seeking their remedy under Section 103-A of the Representation of People Act.
The hearing of the petition moved by the PPP’s Mir Hasan Khoso against the election of Dr Sohrab Sarki of the PML (Q) from a Jacobabad National Assembly constituency was, meanwhile, adjourned as the returning officer had not been able to compile a report because of the law and order situation.
Plea against ex-CM
Meanwhile, six petitions were filed late on Thursday by PPP candidates through Advocates Raza Hashmi and Hassaan Sabir to question the election of former chief minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim and his brother and nephew and associates from as many Tharparkar constituencies. Wali Mohammad Rahimo, Pesomal, Sharjeel Memon, Dost Mohammad Rahimo, Mahesh Kumar and Imam Ali Samejo have challenged the election of Dr Arbab Rahim, Arbab Zulfiqar Ali, Haji Abdullah, Abdul Razzak Rahimo, Arbab Zakaullah and Ghulam Haider Samejo from PS-60, PS-61, PS-62, PS-63, NA-229 and NA-230, respectively. They are likely to be heard on Friday.