SC has no jurisdiction to interpret election law in Islamic context: CJ


ISLAMABAD:Chief Justice (CJ) Mian Saqib Nisar Friday observed that the Supreme Court had no jurisdiction to interpret election law on the basis of Islamic injunction.

A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Nisar heard the case pertaining to determining whether disqualification of lawmakers under Article 62(1)(f) is for life or time specific.
During the course of proceedings, Azhar Siddiqui counsel for civil society claimed that the election law paved the way for former prime minister Nawaz Sharif to become party head violates Islamic teachings.

However, the chief justice remarked that if the counsel wanted to examine Section 203 of election law with touchstone of religious provision, he should approach the Federal Shariat Court (FSC).

He observed that the apex court had no jurisdiction as it was an exclusive domain of the FSC.
The court asked Siddiqui to outline provisions in the Constitution that had been violated through the election law. 
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf lawyer Advocate Gohar Nawaz Sindhu request to disqualify lawmakers who had voted in favour of this law.

Upon this the chief justice remarked that the bench would slap heavy fine if the petition did not hold up.
The court noted that some parameters had to be set in order to filter filing of frivolous petition.

One of the petitioners’ Advocate Zulifqar Bhutta adopted the arguments presented by MNA Sheikh Rashid's lawyer, Barrister Farogh Naseem, and PPP's counsel, Latif Khosa, in previous hearings.
He said there was no way a person disqualified by the apex court could become a political party chief.
To this, the chief justice remarked that the new law passed by Parliament could allow any convicted person to assume the position of political party head.

The chief justice remarked that the apex court could only nullify a law if it contradicts the Constitution. He also pointed out that a representative of the Election Commission of Pakistan was in the standing committee when the Elections Act 2017 was being drafted.

The hearing has been adjourned to February 13.APP/AFP

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