SC dismisses plea seeking Sindh CM Murad’s disqualification


ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday dismissed a petition seeking the disqualification of Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah.

The petition sought the disqualification of Murad on the basis of dual nationality and work permit.

The hearing was conducted by a three-member judicial bench headed by Justice Umar Ata Bandial.

Murad’s disqualification petition was dismissed by the returning officer, the court said and added that the petitioner did not challenge the returning officer’s decision on a legal forum.

The petitioner was a political rival of CM Sindh, the judges observed.

They said being a political rival does not confirm one’s intentions, adding that the high court rightfully rejected the petition previously.

“Despite there being a legal forum in place, why was the petition lodged in the high court,” questioned Justice Muneeb Akhtar, adding that the petitioner can’t request to remove someone from the post all of a sudden.

“Everybody brings the petition to disqualify someone from their post to the Supreme Court and the high court,” Justice Akhtar lamented.

“There are legal forums available for such petitions.”

He said that the petitioner’s intention should be proven in order to remove someone from the post.

Justice Bandial remarked that political rivalry could not be made the only basis to hear a disqualification petition.

Under the new legal regulations, a petition can be lodged in legal forums, Justice Bandial stated, adding that under the new laws, anyone can use legal forums to lodge a petition.

“Parliament has widened the scope to criticise a member’s candidacy,” Justice Akhtar remarked during the proceedings.

“Political opponents have rights as well,” Justice Akhtar and Justice Bandial observed stating that Murad’s position was only challenged on a political basis.

“Disqualification does not apply in this case,” Justice Bandial informed the petitioner.

“Petitioner needs to give reasons to prove the case against Murad,” Justice Bandial further remarked.

“Murad forfeited his dual nationality July 2013,” Justice Bandial added, explaining that after vacating nationality there is no basis to disqualify him for dual nationality.