The nomination papers of several top leaders and party chiefs including Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) chief Pervez Musharraf and Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan’s (MQM-P) Dr Farooq Sattar were rejected on Tuesday by returning officers (ROs) for some constituencies.
The prospective lawmakers can appeal the ROs’ decisions before appellate tribunals.
The detailed orders are awaited as the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) concluded the scrutiny of nomination papers at 4pm today.
Following are party-wise details of acceptance and rejection of nomination papers:
The nomination papers of PML-N leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and his covering candidate Sardar Mehtab Khan Abbasi were rejected by the RO for Islamabad’s NA-53, Muhammad Adnan.
The RO turned down all objections against the nomination of the two PML-N leaders, but rejected their papers on technical grounds. According to the RO, Abbasi had not submitted complete tax returns with his documents.
The papers of PML-N president and former Punjab chief minister Shahbaz Sharif were accepted for NA-3 Swat after his personal assistant appeared before the RO for scrutiny of Sharif’s papers. Sharif’s papers for NA-192 Dera Ghazi Khan were also accepted.
Former railways minister Khawaja Saad Rafique’s papers were accepted for NA-131 Lahore.
The nomination papers of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz, were accepted for the Lahore constituencies of NA-125, NA-127 and PP-173. Her cousin Hamza Shahbaz’s papers for NA-132 and NA-124 were also accepted by the RO.
PTI chief Imran Khan’s nomination papers were accepted by the ROs for NA-35 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Bannu district, NA-243 in Karachi and NA-131 in Lahore. His papers for NA-95 Mianwali were rejected on technical grounds.
The RO for NA-53 Islamabad rejected Khan’s nomination papers on account of being incomplete.
Although the RO rejected former PTI MNA Ayesha Gulalai and Justice and Democratic Party (JDP) candidate Abdul Wahab Baluch’s objections against Khan’s candidature, he turned down the PTI chief’s papers saying he had submitted an incomplete affidavit as approved by the Supreme Court.
In his order on Khan’s papers, the RO said that the PTI chief had not filled a column in the affidavit in which he was required to describe his performance as an MNA.
Khan had served as MNA from NA-56 Rawalpindi. There had been resentment in his constituency as he allegedly never visited it during his five-year term despite living in Banigala only a few kilometres away. Khan has decided not to contest the election from the same constituency this time and opted for standing from Islamabad instead.
PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari’s nomination papers for NA-8 Malakand and NA-246 in Karachi’s Lyari neighbourhood were accepted by the ROs after scrutiny.
His lawyer Farooq H. Naek while speaking to reporters in Karachi said they had answered all queries put to them by the RO, after which Bilawal’s papers were accepted. He expressed the hope that the PPP chairman will win the poll from Lyari.
The nomination papers of PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari were also accepted for NA-213 Shaheed Benazirabad.
Dr Farooq Sattar had filed nomination papers to contest elections on NA-245 constituency in Karachi. The RO for NA-245, Ahsan Khan, rejected Sattar’s nomination papers on the grounds that he is a declared absconder in two cases.
The official, in his decision, mentioned that Dr Sattar concealed the two cases and his status as an absconder. Dr Sattar has been declared an absconder in two cases pertaining to the violation of loudspeaker laws under Section 144.
Dr Sattar is among the nine MQM leaders who were booked in Nov 2015 under Section 144 of the Pakistan Penal Code for harassing commuters.
The cases had been registered at the Soldier Bazaar police station in connection with an MQM rally, which was held to register the protest against the arrest of MQM party workers as well as raids conducted by the Rangers at party offices.
However, Sattar’s nomination papers were accepted for NA-247 that consists of Karachi’s Defence and Clifton localities.
Musharraf’s nomination papers, filed from Chitral for NA-1, were rejected by RO Mohammad Khan.
Meanwhile, the attorney for Musharraf filed an appeal to withdraw the former dictator’s nomination papers for NA-247 in Karachi. Musharraf and his lawyers had earlier failed to appear before the RO for scrutiny of his papers.
Last week, the Supreme Court (SC) had withdrawn its conditional directive allowing Musharraf to file nomination papers after he failed to appear for a court hearing.
Earlier, the apex court had said that the former army chief’s nomination papers would be received by the returning officer, but only be considered if Musharraf appeared in person at the SC Lahore registry.
The nomination papers of PTI dissident and chief of her eponymous party, Ayesha Gulalai, were rejected for Islamabad’s NA-53.
Her papers were rejected on technical grounds after the RO found some information missing from them.
The nomination papers of Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman were accepted by the RO for NA-38 in Dera Ismail Khan.
Awami Muslim League (AML) chief Sheikh Rashid’s nomination papers were accepted after scrutiny by the RO for Rawalpindi’s NA-60 and NA-62 constituencies.
Right to appeal
The scrutiny of nomination papers to exclude ineligible candidates from the race started last Tuesday, a day after ROs completed the process of receiving nomination papers from prospective candidates.
According to the revised election schedule issued by the ECP on June 8, the last date for filing appeals against acceptance or rejection of nomination papers by the ROs is June 22. The last date for decision on the appeals by tribunals is June 27.
Revised lists of validly nominated candidates will be published on June 28 whereas the last date for withdrawal of candidature is June 29.
The final list of contesting candidates is expected to be published on June 30.
With additional reporting by Tahir Naseer in Rawalpindi, Ali Waqar in Lahore, Zulfiqar Memon in Shaheed Benazirabad and Tariq Saeed Birmani in D.G. Khan.