SC to hear petition against May 2013 elections

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The Supreme Court on Friday admitted for hearing a petition seeking to declare the May 2013 general elections null and void and order fresh elections.

The petition, filed by former SC judge Mahmood Akhter Shahid Siddiqui, has been fixed for hearing on October 29 by a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Nasirul Mulk.

The petition, filed through counsel Mian Allah Nawaz, pleads the court to order fresh elections.

According to the petitioner, magnetic ink used in last year’s polls was defective and action should be initiated against ECP officials and others involved in the purchase of the faulty ink.

Filed on Oct 4, the petition seeks orders to appropriate authorities to punish after initiating criminal as well as departmental actions the members of the ECP and officers who purchased defective ink from the Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR) laboratories and the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) and supplied it to the returning officers and presiding officers for use in polling stations.

The petitioner says the main issue was why ECP members, ROs and POs did not follow the statutory pre-requisites to the election process.

The petitioner has included the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) as a respondent in the constitutional petition.

Justice Siddiqui is a former SC judge from Bahawalpur who retired on Oct 3, 2011.

The petition comes at a time when opposition parties led by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) have been carrying out anti-government demonstrations across Pakistan in protest of alleged rigging in the 2013 polls.