PML-N’s Daniyal out, PTI’s Fawad in as plot thickens

  •  SC disqualifies former minister for five years in contempt case as LHC election tribunal clears PTI spokesman for general elections

ISLAMABAD/LAHORE: As election day draws near, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) suffered another setback on Thursday after the Supreme Court (SC) disqualified former minister and the party’s candidate from Narowal’s NA-77 constituency, Daniyal Aziz for five years for using contemptuous language against the superior judiciary.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), on the other hand, has taken another step forward with its briefly disqualified spokesperson, Fawad Chaudhry, being allowed to contest the polls from Jhelum’s NA-67 on the orders of the Lahore High Court (LHC).


Earlier in the day, the top court found former federal privatisation minister Daniyal Aziz guilty of contempt of court and sentenced him till the rising of the court, which renders him disqualified to contest elections for a period of five years under Article 63(1)(g) of the constitution.

According to Article 63 (1)(g), a person shall be disqualified from being elected or chosen as, and from being, a member of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), if¬ he has been convicted by a court of competent jurisdiction…unless a period of five years has elapsed since his release.

After Nehal Hashmi, Daniyal is the second PML-N leader who has been convicted in a contempt case.

A three-judge bench of the top court, which had taken suo motu notice of Aziz’s anti-judiciary remarks, heard the proceedings since February this year.

As the three-member bench, headed by Justice Gulzar Ahmed, convened to announce the verdict, Justice Mushir Alam, who was part of the original bench, was given the verdict for reading out. Justice Alam, however, decided to wait for Aziz before announcing the verdict as the former minister had not arrived in court.

As Aziz later reached the top court, the court ruled that he committed contempt.

The court also ruled that it deliberately showed leniency and did not send Aziz to jail for six months under the law.

Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel, the original head and member of the bench, were not in Islamabad to take part in the hearing.

Following the verdict, Aziz’s legal counsel announced that his client would file a review petition in the Supreme Court. If the verdict gets overturned in review, Aziz may still be able to contest the July 25 general elections from NA-77 (Narowal).


Speaking outside the court, the former minister said that his father will contest the upcoming general election on his behalf.

“We had prepared for a SC verdict disqualifying me,” Aziz said.

“My father has submitted nomination papers and will contest the election on my behalf,” Aziz— who had been issued a PML-N ticket for NA-77, Narowal-I constituency — declared.

Aziz denied ever saying the words for which he was held in contempt. “I never said the words that were written in the newspaper and for which I was held in contempt,” he claimed.

Aziz argued that the contemptuous phrases on whose basis he was held in contempt were censored with a beep when they were aired in news bulletins, which according to Aziz, was akin to him not having said it.

“I have never violated the court’s orders,” he said. “In fact, my party and I have always implemented the court’s orders. To disagree is our right, we have always done that and will keep on doing it.”

Meanwhile, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has also filed an appeal in the Lahore High Court (LHC) against the appellate election tribunal that barred him from contesting from his home constituency of NA-57. However, the decision on his appeal has yet to come.


Meanwhile, the Lahore High Court (LHC) overturned Fawad Chaudhry’s disqualification, allowing him to be a part of the upcoming elections from his home constituency NA-67, Jhelum.

The PTI leader had appealed the election tribunal Rawalpindi bench’s decision restraining him from contesting from NA-67.

In his appeal, the PTI spokesperson had claimed that the tribunal rejected his nomination papers stating that details of Rs3.2million spent on international trips were missing, however, he argued that a copy of a certificate by the Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) with details of accounts had been attached with the nomination form.

“The tribunal disregarded enclosed documents and announced disqualification,” he said while requesting the court to declare the verdict as invalid, besides allowing him to contest elections.

After the LHC’s decision in his favour, an elated Chaudhry termed it a win for both PTI and the people of Jhelum on Twitter.

In another tweet, Chaudhry also thanked the leadership of Pakistan Bar Council, LHC Bar Association and lawyers for their support in “rejecting the illegal order of disqualification” against him.

“Those who were celebrating my disqualification are now hiding their faces,” concluded Fawad while speaking to the media outside the LHC.

On June 27, Fawad Chaudhry was disqualified from his home constituency of NA-67, Jhelum on the behest of an appeal filed by Justice and Democratic Party’s Fakhar Abbas Kazmi who had stated that Chaudhry had not paid agriculture tax on his land and was listed under another name ‘Fawad Ahmad’ on his national identity card.



Comments are closed.