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  1. #1
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    Senate elections to be held through secret ballot under Article 226 of Constitution

    https://www.dawn.com/news/1609941/sc...f-constitution

    The Supreme Court on Monday announced its opinion on the presidential reference regarding Senate elections, saying that polls for the upper house of parliament will be held through secret ballot, according to Article 226 of the Constitution.

    The 4-1 majority opinion was announced by a five-member larger bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed and including Justice Mushir Alam, Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Yahya Afridi.

    Justice Afridi disagreed with the majority opinion, while observing that "the opinion sought by the Worthy President, Islamic Republic of Pakistan in the instant Reference, is not a question of law within the contemplation of Article 186 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973". Therefore, he abstained from giving na opinion on the reference.

    The Supreme Court said that Senate elections are held in accordance with the law and the Constitution.

    "It is the duty of the Election Commission of Pakistan [...] to ensure that the election is conducted honestly, justly, fairly, and in accordance with law and that corrupt practices are guarded against," it said.

    The apex court suggested that the ECP could use latest technology to hold transparent elections. "The Election Commission is required to take all available measures including utilising technologies to fulfill the solemn constitutional duty to ensure that the election is 'conducted honestly, justly, fairly and in accordance with law and that corrupt practices are guarded against'."

    It emphasised that all institutions were bound to follow the ECP.

    The bench said that the secrecy of the ballot papers, however, was "not final", quoting a decision by the top court on the same in 1967 (Niaz Ahmed case).

    It also said that the ECP could "use the latest technology to ensure the holding of transparent elections" under powers granted to it according to Article 218 of the Constitution (related to the formation of election commission).

    Talking to reporters outside the Supreme Court, PTI's Senator Faisal Javed termed the opinion a "splendid decision" and a "victory for Pakistan".

    He said he was grateful to the court for listening to everyone.

    "The attorney general's team worked hard and great arguments were done. Such a detailed discussion on the Senate has not happened before."

    He added that Prime Minister Imran Khan had made efforts to end corruption from every level, including bringing an end to "bribery, thievery and buying and selling" in the Senate elections.

    "The honourable court said secrecy is not absolute. That means it cannot stay [this way] till the Day of Judgement".

    Talking further on the court's opinion, he said it had instructed the ECP to work on matters including proportional representation and take measures against corruption in elections.

    He said that when elections are held through identifiable ballots, no one would dare to sell their vote. "This is a splendid opinion for transparency," he stressed.

    He said after the court's opinion, the ECP would have to ensure three things: identifiable ballots, proportional representation and ensuring free and transparent elections.

    Speaking separately to reporters, Minister for Information Shibli Faraz called on the ECP to take "practical steps" to end corruption and secrecy in Senate elections.

    He said the primary reason behind the presidential reference was to find out what practical steps can be taken to end corruption in Senate elections.

    "Today's decision is a very historic decision which apparently seems [to state] that Senate elections will be held according to Article 226. But at the same time, the honourable judges of the Supreme Court acknowledged that technology should be used to make elections transparent."

    The minister requested the ECP to "use technology — in the form of a bar code or a serial number on the ballot paper — to ensure that these [Senate] elections do not become secret as per the SC's opinion".

    He also termed the government's decision to file a presidential reference as a "very important and good decision", saying it was a significant milestone in the PTI's struggle.

    It would ensure that members elected to the upper house of parliament were done so on merit and their personal and business interests did not affect their efforts for legislation, he added.

    Faraz also expressed confidence that Finance Minister Hafeez Sheikh would win the Senate election, saying "people vote for Imran Khan, not the candidate".

    Meanwhile, Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan said the ECP was "constitutionally bound to follow the opinion of [the] SC and implement it for the Senate election scheduled for March 3".

    In a statement, he said the opinion of the apex court was "binding" and ignoring or violating it amounts to contempt and misconduct.

    The attorney general said the court was of the view that secrecy in Senate elections was not absolute or eternal, thus it was up to the ECP to select the method to be used for the upcoming polls such as printing a bar code or serial number on the ballot paper.

    "ECP is bound to print such identifiable or traceable ballot papers under Section 122(5) of the Election Act, 2017 [...] No change in law is required to give effect to SC opinion as 122(5) is existing law."

    He said if there was any evidence to suggest corruption or rigging in the Senate elections after they were over, then any party head or citizen could "lodge [a] complaint with available material or evidence against any voting MPA/MNA with ECP".

    "ECP is bound to investigate and trace the ballot to see whether any corrupt practice occurred," said AG Khan, adding if it did not, the complainant could go to court or tribunal to take up the issue.

    The court had reserved its opinion on Saturday.

    Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan had on Dec 23, 2020, moved the 11-page reference under Article 186 of the Constitution relating to the advisory jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.

    The president had sought the answer to the question of whether or not the condition of secret ballot under Article 226 of the Constitution applied to the Senate elections. The hearing started on January 4.

    Ahead of the announcement, the registrar office had issued notices to the attorney general, chief election commissioner, Senate chairman and speakers of the national and provincial assemblies, advocates general for the four provinces, members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and others.

  2. #2
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1610140/go...nate-elections

    Members of the government and the opposition both claimed victory over the Supreme Court's (SC) opinion on the issue of secret ballot in the upcoming Senate elections, which was announced early on Monday morning.

    In its short written order issued some hours after the announcement, the Supreme Court bench noted that Senate elections are held in accordance with the law and the Constitution. However, the apex court suggested that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) could use the latest technology to hold transparent elections. The bench also said that the secrecy of the ballot papers was "not final", quoting a decision by the top court on a similar matter in 1967 (Niaz Ahmed case).

    The 4-1 majority opinion was announced by a five-member larger bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed and including Justice Mushir Alam, Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Ijazul Ahsan and Justice Yahya Afridi, with the latter choosing to abstain from responding to the question posed by the president's reference.

    Addressing the media outside the ECP's head office in Islamabad, Education Minister Shafqat Mahmood said that the SC's decision "supports our stance and moves it forward". The education minister was joined by Adviser to the Prime Minister on Parliamentary Affairs Dr Babar Awan, Federal Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry, Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Political Communication Shahbaz Gill, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Interior and Accountability Mirza Shahzad Akbar and PTI Senator Faisal Javed.

    The education minister said the SC's decision "has shown a path" to how bad practices in the Senate elections could be prevented. He said it was "clearly written" that it was the duty of the ECP to conduct an election which was free of corrupt practices.

    Awan, meanwhile, said that the SC referred to a previous decision of the top court in 1967 which allowed for "secrecy to be lifted considering the present circumstances, this is clearly written". "This is a decisive moment in Pakistan's history for elections to be conducted fairly".

    Chaudhry also said that the SC's advice was "clear" that voters and their votes should be identifiable. "This is the principle on which the prime minister and the cabinet sent this reference to the SC," said the federal minister.

    "What is the SC's decision? They have said that the secrecy of the ballot will remain secret for political parties but it won't be secret for the ECP. So if there are allegations of horse trading or selling votes, then the ECP can conduct an inquiry," said Chaudhry.

    Minister for Information Shibli Faraz also took to Twitter and hailed the decision as "historic". He said it was a "big day" for businessmen and traders of "[people's] consciences" since the people who set up markets for buying and selling of votes will be disappointed.

    "This is a success of Imran Khan's vision of transparent elections," said the information minister, adding that technology would be used in light of the SC decision to make "transparency real and make the identification of votes possible".

    Addressing the media outside the SC premises earlier, Senator Javed had also termed the opinion a "splendid decision" and a "victory for Pakistan". "The honourable court said secrecy is not absolute. That means it cannot stay [this way] till the Day of Judgement," said the senator.

    Meanwhile, PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz took to Twitter, saying the SC's opinion once again proved that "the Constitution is far above the tricks of vote thieves, malicious references and conspiratorial ordinances".

    She said that now "alarms of technology are being raised" but warned that "RTS and Daska-fog technologies" wouldn't work anymore.

    "Why are you afraid of the power of the vote?"

    The Sindh government's spokesperson, Barrister Murtaza Wahab, too said that the SC opinion agreed with the "principled stance of the PPP, Sindh government, different opposition parties and Pakistan's various lawyer organisations".

    "What was that stance? it was that Senate polls must be held in accordance with the Constitution," said Wahab, adding that Article 226 had already decided that any election in accordance with the Constitution would be through the secret ballot.

    "Our stance was victorious because it was in accordance with the Constitution and the PTI and federal government lost," the Wahab, adding that the federal government had repeatedly claimed that Senate elections aren't held in accordance with the Constitution and they shouldn't be held through secret balloting.

    "Today is a day for the lovers of the Constitution and those who have always struggled for the supremacy of the Constitution and free and fair elections."

  3. #3
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    A corrupt system created by other corrupt people allowed to continue with a few caveats. You can tell why these thieves wanted it to continue, and the SC has left it mostly untouched. Not a great day for PK
    Last edited by MenInG; 2nd March 2021 at 12:33.

  4. #4
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    Federal Minister for Science and Technology Chaudhry Fawad Hussain says he is surprised to see the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to delay reforms to ensure transparent polls until the elections.

    Taking his astonishment to Twitter, the federal minister said that the commission has acknowledged the importance of using technology to prevent vote buying and selling and corruption in the Senate elections.

    But it is astonishing that the ECP is delaying these reforms until the next elections, he added.

    The decision of the Supreme Court of Pakistan gives a different opinion, but both the institutions are respectable for us, he maintained.

    Chaudhry said the Opposition was putting its energies in the Senate elections which is a lost battle for them already.

    He said the Opposition’s cries will start after 24 hours and then they will create a new story to keep the TV screens alive, adding that the immature politics of the Opposition is arranged on a daily basis as they lack any policy and strategy.

    GEO


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  5. #5
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    IK, NS and the late BB wanted open balloting. IK supported NS in 2015 when he said he wanted open balloting but today the mafia are hiding from transparency, why is that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    IK, NS and the late BB wanted open balloting. IK supported NS in 2015 when he said he wanted open balloting but today the mafia are hiding from transparency, why is that?
    New vid released of Gilani jnr buying votes for the senate election. Looks like the game is on big time against Zardari now. They must be stopped.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Last Monetarist View Post
    what type of incompetent lawyers PTI have who advised President to file a reference basically asking Supreme Court to make change in constitution? this is a huge blunder

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    Quote Originally Posted by srh View Post
    what type of incompetent lawyers PTI have who advised President to file a reference basically asking Supreme Court to make change in constitution? this is a huge blunder
    They didn't. The court case was was well fought and today's exposure has humiliated the corrupt losers of the PDM. The mafia have been exposed for all to see.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    New vid released of Gilani jnr buying votes for the senate election. Looks like the game is on big time against Zardari now. They must be stopped.
    The mafia exposed again. It's basically Kaptaan against all.

  10. #10
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    What it more look like a preemptive strike by pti by releasing the videos and audio chats may just work. Pdm suddenly looks on a defensive mode as you can notice their leaders talk on various talk shows. Gilani and Bilawel press conference was also a weak one. Even if some how gilani wins tomorrow elections, which is highly unlikely now, his victory will be challenged by pti.

    Pti seems to have learn their lesson from previous senate elections and keeping a hard watch on their mpas and mnas this time. Similar preemptive strike was done before the release of Reham Khan book thus neutralising the damage before it may occur.

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    The Sindh govt is stealing from the poor of Sindh and using the money to kill journalists, buy politicians and judges. Its time the state started to show these crooks who is boss.

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    whats the current situation?? seen various bakwaas saying Noon league have bribed the most??

  13. #13
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    Great video by Imran Riaz. @Mamoon where are you son. Who destroyed PK?


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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    whats the current situation?? seen various bakwaas saying Noon league have bribed the most??
    And we have these losers still saying IK is the problem in PK, where are the Nooras and the hypocrites?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    And we have these losers still saying IK is the problem in PK, where are the Nooras and the hypocrites?
    why didnt they support an open ballot? well we know why so they could buy people and save themselves.
    One wonders whether we need a senate now if its going to be full of people like this?

    whats the point of voting for anybody if they cant get a majority? otherwise they cant do anything for the nation. The whole first past the post, parliamentary system just doesnt work for a country like Pakistan. INMHO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    why didnt they support an open ballot? well we know why so they could buy people and save themselves.
    One wonders whether we need a senate now if its going to be full of people like this?

    whats the point of voting for anybody if they cant get a majority? otherwise they cant do anything for the nation. The whole first past the post, parliamentary system just doesnt work for a country like Pakistan. INMHO.
    The fact they are using some of their stolen money to bribe people to save most of their stolen money is proper mafia tactics. I am fast coming to the conclusion that we need a dictator like Pinochet, except this time its not leftists that need to be eliminated, its the mafia from these 2 political mafia families. And when i say eliminated, i mean properly eliminated. PK cannot develop any political system until the last vestiges of these thugs goes from PK

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    The fact they are using some of their stolen money to bribe people to save most of their stolen money is proper mafia tactics. I am fast coming to the conclusion that we need a dictator like Pinochet, except this time its not leftists that need to be eliminated, its the mafia from these 2 political mafia families. And when i say eliminated, i mean properly eliminated. PK cannot develop any political system until the last vestiges of these thugs goes from PK
    I cant see any other way of sorting out this mess. Also breaking up the wadera system and land reform but who has the guts and power to do this? Nobody.

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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    I cant see any other way of sorting out this mess. Also breaking up the wadera system and land reform but who has the guts and power to do this? Nobody.
    Its a shame that Mushi was so pathetic. He could have cleaned up the whole system but instead settled for a flat in London

  19. #19
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    Gillani has won, now the opposition can file a no confidence motion against the pti government.

  20. #20
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    Very tight win for Gillani. Interesting times ahead now especially the bills relating to money laundering and terror financing will now be a hurdle to be passed through Senate given the opposition would want Pakistan to continue to remain in grey list of FATF to prove their point.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Savak View Post
    Gillani has won, now the opposition can file a no confidence motion against the pti government.
    Doesn't the no confidence motion requires 2/3 majority?

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    Gilani won!! Massive upset for the government.

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    Imran Khan should take vote of confidence from National Assembly now to prove that only his choice for senate election "Hafeez Sheikh" was a wrong choice but PTI still has the majority.

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    Quote Originally Posted by saeedhk View Post
    Gilani won!! Massive upset for the government.
    Gilani didn't win. Corruption won and I hope IK nails these crooks. Btw the money used is stolen from the poor of PK, these haraamis don't use their own cash. Its the funds from Sindh development given by the centre

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    Quote Originally Posted by srh View Post
    Imran Khan should take vote of confidence from National Assembly now to prove that only his choice for senate election "Hafeez Sheikh" was a wrong choice but PTI still has the majority.
    Or jail the bribed and the bribers, or is that not an issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Gilani didn't win. Corruption won and I hope IK nails these crooks. Btw the money used is stolen from the poor of PK, these haraamis don't use their own cash. Its the funds from Sindh development given by the centre
    PTI + Coalition partners strength was 98/99 in KPK and they got a collective of 108 votes there where PDM's collective votes were 45/46 but they got 36. Do you know why would that have happened?

    Also, Shehryar Afridi's vote and Zartaj Gul vote got rejected. Whose fault is it?
    Last edited by natkhat-shahzada; 3rd March 2021 at 19:27.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Gilani didn't win. Corruption won and I hope IK nails these crooks. Btw the money used is stolen from the poor of PK, these haraamis don't use their own cash. Its the funds from Sindh development given by the centre
    yeah this isnt really over especially if Gilani is declared Na-ahel. Just more kichari and bakwaas..
    By the way has PTI managed to get enough seats or not?

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by natkhat-shahzada View Post
    PTI + Coalition partners strength was 98/99 in KPK and they got a collective of 108 votes there where PDM's collective votes were 45/46 but they got 36. Do you know why would that have happened?

    Also, Shehryar Afridi's vote and Zartaj Gul vote got rejected. Whose fault is it?
    Gilanis sons open bribery disqualifies him. But this system is just corrupt to the core. Where are the billions for the bribes coming from?

  29. #29
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    What a humiliation

    Game over for selected PM and his incompetent party. The most useless and flop government in Pakistan history.

    #GameOverImranKhan trending on Twitter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamoon View Post
    What a humiliation

    Game over for selected PM and his incompetent party. The most useless and flop government in Pakistan history.

    #GameOverImranKhan trending on Twitter.
    Finally you have crawled out of your woodwork. Enjoy your corrupt crooks. We dont see you here often as humiliation is your fate, but alas you have something to celebrate. What happens if the PTI and allies still get a majority. BTW did you see Gilanis son buying votes with the money stolen off the poor of Sindh?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mamoon View Post
    what a humiliation

    game over for selected pm and his incompetent party. The most useless and flop government in pakistan history.

    #gameoverimrankhan trending on twitter.
    who won?

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    Itís sad to see the mentality of some people.

    PM toh badal loge? But how will you change the peopleís mindset...?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mueez View Post
    It’s sad to see the mentality of some people.

    PM toh badal loge? But how will you change the people’s mindset...?
    @Mamoon has disappeared under the woodwork as quickly as he came out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by srh View Post
    Imran Khan should take vote of confidence from National Assembly now to prove that only his choice for senate election "Hafeez Sheikh" was a wrong choice but PTI still has the majority.
    Only a man like IK could ask for a vote confidence when he didn't need to after winning the Senate election. Tell your Noora friends to show some courage, the rats want to run to London but real leaders fight for their country.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Or jail the bribed and the bribers, or is that not an issue.
    sure, I am all for punishing corrupt people.

    One of my biggest beef with PTI government is how they botched up the accountability process. Before PTI government come into power, big corrupt people were in jail or were facing jail and there was hope that they will be punished and a precedent will be set that if you are corrupt you will be punished. Public will start trusting the accountability process.

    But after PTI government comes into power, all the big corrupt people get away one by one. Look at them they are all outside and now talking about democracy. Today news just came in that Ishaq Dar is also getting free. Public have again lost trust in the accountability process. PTI failed miserably in this regard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by srh View Post
    sure, I am all for punishing corrupt people.

    One of my biggest beef with PTI government is how they botched up the accountability process. Before PTI government come into power, big corrupt people were in jail or were facing jail and there was hope that they will be punished and a precedent will be set that if you are corrupt you will be punished. Public will start trusting the accountability process.

    But after PTI government comes into power, all the big corrupt people get away one by one. Look at them they are all outside and now talking about democracy. Today news just came in that Ishaq Dar is also getting free. Public have again lost trust in the accountability process. PTI failed miserably in this regard.
    Maybe you need to look at NAB and especially who appointed Bawa Javed, and if you know your stuff, you will know. IK can't sack him as he needs a 2/3 majority. You also know that LHC is called Lohar High Court for a reason. No institution in PK has been left untouched with years of mafia control.
    BTW can you tell me which of the big fish was in jail and maybe give you reason as to why? Because it seems you are blaming IK for this corrupt system

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    Just had a chance to update my knowledge after a slogging day at work. Don't understand why are the PDM and the liffafa journalists distributing Mithai, Gilani's win is mostly symbolic and everyone knows the bribery he has done to achieve this narrow win, PTI and its allies have an even bigger lead in the Senate now compared to before.

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    https://www.geo.tv/latest/337976-pm-...nate-elections

    Prime Minister Imran Khan is meeting senior party leaders to review the situation after former premier Yousaf Raza Gilani — a day earlier — pulled a shock victory over the PTI's Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh in the Senate elections.

    Sources told Geo News that the prime minister called all of his engagements to discuss Shaikh's defeat with senior party leaders.

    The PTI's defeat at the hands of Gilani — the PDM's joint candidate — was a setback for the party whose ministers had earlier confidently claimed that Shaikh would win the seat from Islamabad.

    The prime minister will be briefed about the possible reasons behind Shaikh's defeat and discuss the PDM's anti-government move.

    Sources added that the prime minister will discuss the evolving political situation with senior party leaders and important decisions are expected to be taken during the meeting.

    Shortly after it was announced that Gilani had defeated Shaikh in the election, the former prime minister held a press conference to thank PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari as well as the PDM leadership, including PML-N's Nawaz Sharif, Shahbaz Sharif, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Akhtar Mengal, Maryam Nawaz, and ANP leadership, among others.

    "This is the victory of democracy," he had said. "The Islamabad seat was the most important seat in the Senate elections and everyone was eyeing it. [Through my win], the PDM has been victorious."

    Adding to Gillani's point, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had said that the PDM has won through the votes of MNAs, which is also a win for Pakistan.

    He went on to say that PM Imran Khan should "resign from his post," adding that he should adopt sportsmanship and honourably accept his defeat.

    "The PDM will decide a future course of action after mutual consultation with all members."

    Earlier, the PPP chief had tweeted that "Democracy is the best revenge" after the result was announced.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savak View Post
    Just had a chance to update my knowledge after a slogging day at work. Don't understand why are the PDM and the liffafa journalists distributing Mithai, Gilani's win is mostly symbolic and everyone knows the bribery he has done to achieve this narrow win, PTI and its allies have an even bigger lead in the Senate now compared to before.
    they will find out on due course. Remeber before the elections they were saying if the PTI won the most seats it would be the end of the PDM? well they have now. They got an extra seat in KPK which offset the loss in the federal seat.

    They are all making out as if the PTI only got 5 seats in the senate lol..

  40. #40
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    ISLAMABAD: Two members of the National Assembly belonging to the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), Jamil Ahmed and Fahim Khan, called on Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday.

    The MNAs were allegedly involved in a sting operation to record a video in which Ali Haider Gilani, the son of Senator-elect Yousuf Raza Gilani, was seen telling PTI MNAs how to make a vote in the Senate election invalid by over-writing and ticking in front of the names of all candidates on the ballot paper.

    Talking to media in Parliament House, the MNAs admitted that both of them were present in the video clip but they did not call it a sting operation.

    They said that they were ready to appear before the Election Commission of Pakistan if summoned by it during the hearing of the case seeking disqualification of Yousuf Raza Gilani. The hearing of the case will be held on March 11.

    Earlier, soon after obtaining vote of confidence from the National Assembly, Prime Minister Khan met a number of lawmakers of the ruling alliance in Parliament House.

    PM asks Hafeez to continue as finance minister

    The prime minister also met Finance Minister Hafeez Shaikh who had faced an unexpected defeat in recent Senate elections on a seat from Islamabad won by Yousuf Raza Gilani.

    An inside source said the prime minister asked Mr Shaikh not to be disappointed due to his defeat in the Senate polls and continue working as finance minister. This brought to an end rumours that the prime minister had decided to replace Mr Shaikh with an economic wizard from the PTI.

    Earlier, under the Islamabad High Court’s decision, Mr Shaikh as an adviser to the prime minister could neither exercise executive powers not attend meetings of any government body. As a result, the prime minister appointed him federal minister for six months (till June 11) under a clause of the constitution.

    The prime minister also met a delegation of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan and leaders of other allied parties and thanked them for giving him vote of confidence.

    Published in Dawn, March 7th, 2021


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

  41. #41
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1611198/af...irman-election

    PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Sunday expressed optimism that the candidate fielded by the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) for the Senate chairperson election will emerge victorious because the opposition parties will together challenge the PTI-led ruling coalition.

    He was speaking to reporters after calling on PML-N leader Hamza Shehbaz at the latter's Model Town residence in Lahore.

    During their meeting, the two exchanged views on the existing political situation, while Bilawal congratulated Hamza, the opposition leader in the Punjab Assembly, on the victory of PDM candidate Yousuf Raza Gilani in the March 3 Senate elections, according to the PPP.

    Asked how the PDM would ensure its senators vote for the opposition candidate and not defect as had happened during the vote on a no-confidence motion moved by the opposition against Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani in 2019, Bilawal said lessons had been learnt from the past.

    "We have learnt quite a bit from the last [Senate] chairman election; if we hadn't, we would have lost the National Assembly secret ballot election," he said, referring to Gilani's victory on the coveted Senate seat from Islamabad. "We won there and it is our full effort that we challenge [the government] together so the win is of the PDM."

    Elaborating, Bilawal said contacts were being made with the senators elected in the March 3 polls to request them to vote for Gilani in the Senate chairman election. He added that Gilani himself had already requested most of the senators to vote for him.

    The PPP chairman noted that the Chaudhry brothers had been allies of the PPP government during Gilani's tenure as the prime minister, saying "I will go to their house myself and ask for [their] votes."

    After staging an upset in the Senate elections, the opposition parties have managed to retain their majority in the upper house of parliament and are now hopeful of getting the top offices of chairman and deputy chairman for which elections through secret balloting will be held on March 12.

    Hamza, who was released from jail on bail last month, in his remarks said the objectives of the PDM weren't limited to a long march or a no-confidence motion in the short term. Instead, he said, it aimed to correct "the destruction caused in this country in these [past] three years".

    He said the people of Punjab faced issues such as a shortage of medicines or mounds of trash lying on roads, while crop production of cotton, wheat and sugarcane was either at its lowest point or had significantly reduced.

    "The state of the economy [and] of inflation is in front of you," he told reporters.

    Hamza said the PML-N and PPP had learned a lot from the Charter of Democracy, because of which "we moved forward with good traditions for 10 years. There were mistakes but we learned from them."

    He lamented, however, that in the last three years a culture of "rowdiness, cursing and misbehaviour" had become prevalent, citing noisy parliament sessions and yesterday's incident outside the parliament where PML-N leaders were allegedly manhandled by PTI supporters.

    "These things are not good for democracy and Pakistan," the PML-N leader said.

    He said because the PTI had enjoyed being in government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for 10 years, its loss in the Nowshera by-poll along with losses in Sindh by-elections to the PPP indicated that the "people have buried this false slogan of change".

    Hamza said the PDM member parties had accepted Gilani as their joint candidate for the Senate chairman "from the heart". He praised Gilani as a leader who had participated in politics for decades and earned his stature.

    He said Gilani's win on the Senate seat had resonated not just within the parliament but even with the "pushcart driver and the labourer".

    "We have to continue to take the parliament and the nation along with us.

    "We will continue our struggle in the assemblies too and go amongst the people. The logical end of this is that we will show a better Pakistan to the people of Pakistan," he added.

  42. #42
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    Yousuf Raza Gilani nominated as PDM’s joint candidate for Senate chairman

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2288175...enate-chairman

    Pakistan Democratic Party (PDM) – the 11-party anti-government alliance – on Monday unanimously nominated former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, who recently defeated the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf's (PTI) candidate in a major upset in the Senate elections, for the post of Senate chairman.

    The decision was made during the alliance’s meeting, chaired by its head Maulana Fazlur Rehman, in Islamabad.

    PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, Mahmood Khan Achakzai, Aftab Sherpao, Gilani, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and Raja Pervez Ashraf were also in attendance. Three-time prime minister of the country and PML-N Quaid Nawaz Sharif also addressed the meeting via video-link from London.The high-level huddle evaluated the situation after Prime Minister Imran Khan's vote of confidence and the overall political situation in the country, Express News reported.

    On Saturday, the lower house of parliament reaffirmed its confidence in PM Imran by overwhelmingly voting in his favour as the premier polled 178 votes – six more than the magical number of 172. However, the PDM boycotted the NA session which was specifically convened by President Arif Alvi for the PM's trust vote.

    The prime minister had voluntarily decided to seek a fresh vote of confidence after the shock defeat of PTI candidate Hafeez Shaikh at the hands of Gilani in the March 3 Senate elections which the opposition said was a vote of no-confidence against Imran Khan.

    The PDM leadership also discussed its strategy for the long march and joint candidate for deputy chairman of the upper house.

    During the meeting, a special committee set up for the long march presented its recommendations for the grand anti-government demonstration. It said that long march should commence from Karachi on March 26 with a rally and all processions should reach Islamabad by 3pm on March 30.

    The committee recommended that all parties should mobilise as many people as possible and they should bear all expenses on their own.

    It also suggested that a centralised system must be created to mobilise people and to achieve it, traders, farmers and trade unions should be contacted. Committee further recommended that all arrangements should be made on the site of the sit-in prior to the arrival of the participants.

    Addressing the meeting, Bilawal Bhutto said that the election for the post of Senate chairman would take place in four days.

    "We want to win this election as well and add another victory to our credit," he said and added that PPP is committed to PDM's roadmap.

    The government has convened the session of the upper house of parliament on Tuesday (tomorrow) at 4:00pm. Prime Minister’s Adviser for Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan has sent the summary for the session.

    “Still three days are needed to complete the number of working days required under the constitution for the Senate. The constitutional requirement will be completed by March 11,” Awan said. “The new Senate year will begin after election of new senators and the chairman,” he added.

    Speaking on the occasion, Nawaz Sharif said that the reason for the formation of PDM was not to come into power but to end the role of establishment in the country’s politics.

    "I congratulate Yousuf Raza Gilani for a remarkable win. Bilawal was right when he said Gilani's win would greatly impact the national politics," he remarked.

    The former premier asked PPP to nominate Gilani for the post of Senate chairman, and assured his party‘s full support to him in the forthcoming elections.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Last Monetarist View Post
    Yousuf Raza Gilani nominated as PDM’s joint candidate for Senate chairman

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2288175...enate-chairman
    Surely, they could have found one honest guy in the whole of this dacoit movement, on the other hand, maybe not

  44. #44
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    PDM nominates Gillani as its candidate for Senate chairman

    The Pakistan Democratic Movement, an alliance of 11 opposition parties, has nominated Yousaf Raza Gillani as its joint candidate in the March 12 election for the Senate chairman.

    Gillani defeated PTI’s Abdul Hafeez Shaikh in the March 3 Senate election on a Islamabad seat.

    The decision to nominate him for the Senate chairman election was taken at a meeting of PDM leaders in Islamabad Monday.

    The PTI has nominated Sadiq Sanjrani as its candidate. Sanjrani became the chairman of the upper house for the first time in 2018.

    After the March 3 election, opposition parties have 53 members in the Senate, while the PTI and its allies have 47 seats.

    https://www.samaa.tv/news/2021/03/pd...nate-chairman/


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  45. #45
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    https://dailytimes.com.pk/732450/pti...afoor-haideri/

    The PTI government has offered the Senate deputy chairman seat to its staunch opponent Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI).

    As per details, Defence Minister Pervaiz Khattak has confirmed the development, saying that the ruling party has told senior JUI-F leader Abdul Ghafoor Haideri that he can be the deputy chairman Senate.

    Earlier today, Khattak and Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani met Haideri and offered him the position.

    Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, whose party is member of opposition alliance Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), said that he cannot predict who will become Senate Chairman on March 12 nor has he been informed about PDM’s decision about candidates for the top slots of Senate.

    On the other hand, PDM has decided to field JUI-F candidate for slot of Senate Deputy Chairman while Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) will get post of Opposition leader in the upper house of parliament.

    A meeting of steering committee was held under the chair of former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at his residence. The meeting deliberated on names of candidates for the elections; however an official announcement will be made by PDM head Maulana Fazl-ur Rehman.

    The elections for the coveted slots of Senate chairman and deputy chairman are slated to be held on March 12 and the opposition is contesting these polls jointly. It has already nominated Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Yousaf Raza Gillani as its candidate for the Senate chairman seat.

    Earlier, on March 4, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced Sadiq Sanjrani as the party’s candidate for chairman Senate.

    However, from that total of 49, the PML-N’s Ishaq Dar, who was elected senator in 2018, has yet to take oath and is unlikely to be able to vote for the Senate chairman.

    That means the opposition in reality has only 48 senators, and the Senate itself will have 99 members able to vote.

    Bear in mind that the the government and opposition’s numbers combined (46+48 = 94) still leave 5 senators to be accounted for.

  46. #46
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1611580/ju...y-chairmanship

    Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) general secretary Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri on Tuesday rejected the government's offer of Senate deputy chairmanship and condemned "in the strongest words" Defence Minister Pervez Khattak's statement in front of the media without discussing it in a meeting beforehand.

    While talking to reporters alongside Haideri and Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani after a meeting today, Khattak said "we have invited [Haideri] to come and be the deputy [Senate chairman]."

    "It will be beneficial for him and everyone," the minister added.

    At the time, Haideri said that he had come to meet the Senate chairman which was something he does as a matter of routine.

    However, in a statement issued later, the JUI-F leader said that "no such discussion" regarding the Senate deputy chairmanship had taken place in the meeting earlier, in which members of all political parties were present.

    "Pervez Khattak talked in front of the media after the meeting. I condemn in the strongest words such talk by the minister in front of the media," he added.

    Haideri said that an offer by a government, which the opposition does not recognise, was "meaningless".

    Talking about the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), the 11-party opposition alliance of which JUI-F is a member, he said that the party was bound by any decision that the alliance takes.

    "PDM is completely united and in consensus," he stressed. "The government is using delaying tactics to save its sinking ship," he claimed.

    When asked by a reporter whether the PDM had nominated him for deputy chairman of the upper house of parliament, Haideri replied that he had not been made aware of any such development.

    The JUI-F leader was also asked whether he saw Sanjrani remaining the Senate chairman after the election this week, to which he responded that he "does not know who will be the chairman after March 12 but Sadiq Sanjrani is our chairman right now".

    Last week, Prime Minister Imran Khan had named Sanjrani as the government's candidate for the Senate chairman's office while on Monday, the PDM named PPP's Yousuf Raza Gilani as the opposition's joint candidate.

    Meanwhile, a PDM committee met today to decide on the names of the alliance's candidates for the Senate deputy chairman's office as well as the leader of the opposition in the upper house of parliament.

    According to PDM information secretary Mian Iftikhar Hussain, it was decided that the candidate for Senate deputy chairman would be from JUI-F while the leader of the opposition would be from the PML-N.

    Shortly afterwards, spokesperson for JUI-F, Aslam Ghauri, confirmed that Maulana Haideri would contest the election for the deputy chairman's office as a joint candidate of the opposition.

    "[PDM President and JUI-F chief] Maulana Fazlur Rehman has approved Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri's name for deputy chairman," he said, adding that those who wanted to create chaos within the PDM would fail.

    "PDM candidates will succeed. PDM will achieve full success," the spokesperson claimed.

    The PTI has so far not announced its candidate for the office of deputy chairman, keeping the slot open and placing itself in a better bargaining position to ensure the support of its allies and independent candidates.

    Presiding over a meeting of his spokespersons on Monday, the prime minister vowed to win the chairman’s post despite the opposition’s majority in the upper house.

    Following the March 3 elections, the government, its allies and five independent senators have a combined strength of 48 in the upper house while the opposition has 51 senators.

  47. #47
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    IHC dismisses PTI petition challenging Gilani's Senate victory

    The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday dismissed a petition filed by PTI's Ali Awan challenging the Senate victory of former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

    During today's proceedings, the court also rejected a plea to disqualifying the former premier's son, MPA Ali Haider Gilani.

    Earlier this week, the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) formally nominated Gilani as its candidate for the office of the Senate chairman.

    Gilani caused a major upset by defeating Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh in the March 3 Senate poll on a general seat from Islamabad.

    IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah announced the verdict after listening to the arguments. During the hearing, the PTI MNA told the court that the party wished to bring transparency to the electoral process.

    However, the IHC CJ remarked that the party had approached the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in this regard, adding that there were "alternative forums" to address their grievances. "The election process is currently ongoing and, under the Election Act, you have other forums [for addressing your grievances]," he said.

    "Tell us how the court can ignore these forums and hear this writ petition," the chief justice asked. "You are levelling allegations of selling votes. Some of your own are included in this," he remarked.

    "The court has faith in Parliament and has always respected parliamentarians." The chief justice added that it was everyone's responsibility to abide by the law. "Your case is pending in the ECP. Use that forum first," the judge told the PTI MNA.

    "You are a good and respectable public representative, why have you brought such a petition," he questioned, adding that "this writ petition is not admissible on this occasion." "It is not appropriate to bring political issues to the court unnecessarily," the judge said.

    In a detailed judgement issued later in the day, the IHC chief justice observed that under the Elections Act, 2017, various remedies had been provided which had not been exhausted yet.

    "The statutory remedies provided under the Elections Act, 2017 for challenging the election of a returned candidate have to be exhausted in the manner provided therein before a constitutional petition can be entertained on the basis of its maintainability," Justice Minallah wrote.

    "It has been repeatedly observed that invoking the jurisdiction of a High Court in matters involving political content when other forums are available, is not in public interest," he added while declaring the petition as not maintainable.

    The development comes a day after the ECP rejected a petition filed by the PTI seeking to stop the issuance of the notification for Gilani's victory.

    The ECP asked the PTI to file an amended petition and make the lawmakers, who it alleged had been bribed, a party to it.

    The petition filed last week by ruling PTI lawmakers Farrukh Habib, Maleeka Bokhari and Kanwal Shauzab had asked the ECP not to issue the notification regarding the opposition candidate’s victory in Senate elections.

    The petitions had been filed on the basis of a leaked audio clip of Sindh Minister Nasir Hussain Shah purportedly bargaining with four PTI lawmakers for their votes in Senate elections and a video of Gilani’s son, Ali Haider Gilani, in which he was explaining to some PTI MNAs the techniques to waste their votes and purportedly offering money and development funds.

    https://www.dawn.com/news/1611736/ih...senate-victory


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebat View Post
    PDM nominates Gillani as its candidate for Senate chairman

    The Pakistan Democratic Movement, an alliance of 11 opposition parties, has nominated Yousaf Raza Gillani as its joint candidate in the March 12 election for the Senate chairman.

    Gillani defeated PTI’s Abdul Hafeez Shaikh in the March 3 Senate election on a Islamabad seat.

    The decision to nominate him for the Senate chairman election was taken at a meeting of PDM leaders in Islamabad Monday.

    The PTI has nominated Sadiq Sanjrani as its candidate. Sanjrani became the chairman of the upper house for the first time in 2018.

    After the March 3 election, opposition parties have 53 members in the Senate, while the PTI and its allies have 47 seats.

    https://www.samaa.tv/news/2021/03/pd...nate-chairman/
    ^ Bold

    This is worng.

    PDM has 48 Senators (including Ishaq Dar). So effective number is 47 for PDM allies. Effective number for PTI and Allies is 45. After inclusion of Abdul Qadir, Balochistan, its now 46.

    PDM 47 vs. PTI 46

    There are 06 more Senators who PDM is blatantly, shamelessly counting and claiming as Senators of PDM. Media is stating the words of PDM Leadership without Fact-Checking ( or pretending to be unaware of numbers).

    Let's take a look at other 06 Senators.

    Jamat e Islami has 1 and their Senators usually refrain from voting for Chairman Elections.

    05 is the number of sneators who are independent ( 04 from FATA and 1 from Balochistan ). Routine practice for FATA senators is to join Govt group.

    PDM is building this false narrative of 53 vs 47 so that if Independent Senators vote for Govt Candidate, PDM can start usual rona dhona of rigging.

  49. #49
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    PM Imran nominates Mirza Mohammad Afridi for Senate deputy chairman

    Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday nominated Senator Mirza Mohammad Afridi for the post of the Senate deputy chairman, a day before the election for the two top offices of the upper house is set to take place.

    The announcement was made by federal Information Minister Shibli Faraz on Twitter.

    "Prime Minister Imran Khan has nominated Senator Mirza Mohammad Afridi for deputy chairman slot, giving representation to [an] ex-Fata (Federally Administered Tribal Areas) PTI member," he wrote.

    Afridi was elected to the Senate in the March 2018 elections as an independent candidate from Fata on a general seat.

    A source close to the prime minister had earlier told Dawn that four names were being considered for the office of the Senate deputy chairperson as the ruling coalition’s candidate: Saifullah Niazi, Ijaz Chaudhry, Mirza Mohammad Afridi and Aun Abbas Bappi.

    “The government has intentionally kept open the candidature of deputy chairman to attract not only the partners in the ruling coalition but also the opposition parties for bargaining on the matter,” the source explained.

    The contest for the Senate chairman and deputy chairman seems to be tough for the government as the opposition enjoys a majority in the upper house of parliament. It is impossible for the government to win the polls unless some opposition members either vote for the government’s candidates or waste their votes during the secret ballot on March 12.

    The Pakistan Democratic Movement has fielded Yousuf Raza Gilani of the PPP and Abdul Ghafoor Haideri of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl as joint candidates of the opposition for the election of chairman and deputy chairman of the Senate.

    The ruling party, meanwhile, once again chose Sadiq Sanjrani, the current Senate chairman, to contest the election for chairmanship of the upper house as its candidate.

    Senate elections are held for half of the members after every three years. A senator is elected for a period of six years, while the term of the chairperson and deputy chairperson is three years.

    https://www.dawn.com/news/1611918/pm...eputy-chairman


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  50. #50
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1611932/at...-pml-ns-abbasi

    PML-N's senior leader and former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Thursday alleged that an attempt was being made to "rig" Friday's election for the Senate chairman and deputy chairman offices through state institutions, saying such practices were not good for the country.

    Addressing a press conference alongside other PML-N leaders, Abbasi alleged that members of his party had "received calls" in which they were asked to vote in favour of PTI candidate Sadiq Sanjrani and against the joint opposition candidate Yousuf Raza Gilani in tomorrow's Senate chairman election. It is expected to be a neck-and-neck contest between the government and the opposition.

    The former premier was accompanied by PML-N Senator Hafiz Abdul Karim, who claimed that he had received calls from two "persons of authority" who asked him to vote for the "state's candidate" — a reference to Sanjrani, the current Senate chairman — instead of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) candidate Gilani.

    Earlier in the day, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz made a similar allegation. "Our senators are being called and asked not to vote for PDM candidate. Some of them have recorded the evidence," she tweeted.

    While the PML-N leaders ndid not provide any names, Abbasi said Karim himself wishes to inform the public about "what is happening in the country today ... ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence) officers are calling senators".

    "Names can also be taken here but it is not the purpose. We do not talk about one person. We talk about the idea that is being used in Pakistan today to rig this election," Abbasi added.

    He said the PML-N desired the country to be run according to the Constitution. "The institutions whose purpose is to give the country stability, whose purpose is to follow the Constitution, if they start breaking the Constitution themselves, if they start breaking the law themselves, where will the country go? This is the question we want to put in front of the nation," he added.

    He reiterated that although Karim had the names of the persons who allegedly called him, this was not the purpose of their press conference.

    Abbasi said his party had welcomed the statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations director general, the head of the Pakistan Army's media wing, that the military "has no connection with politics", but said the conditions that had arisen in this year's Senate elections "not once, not twice, not thrice but tens of times" had shown the same was not being implemented.

    "Hafiz Abdul Karim is one person, a lot of senators might have received [calls] but might have not told [about them]," he said.

    "As long as the democratic process in the country is not in accordance with the Constitution, we will continue doing things such as those that happened with Hafiz Abdul Karim."

    This would result in similar damage to the country's economy as could be seen these days, he said. "It is unfortunate that even after 73 years, in the 21st century, we are still doing things that no country in the world does."

    Abbasi said there was "still time to hold tomorrow's Senate election as per the Constitution and the senators' choices".

    The former prime minister said that change in the current system was only possible when people like Senator Karim came forward to talk about the pressure exerted on them.

    Sharing details of the calls he allegedly received, Senator Karim said he only picked up the third call made to him on March 9. According to Karim, he was "requested" to support the PTI candidate.

    The senator said he had told the caller that he supported party supremo Nawaz Sharif. He alleged that corruption investigations had been launched against him as soon as the schedule for the Senate elections was announced.

    "My name was included in an old FIR (first information report) from 2016 that did not [originally] include my name only to pressurise [me] and get the vote of their choice."

    Karim said he wanted to give those persons the message that they could "file as many cases as you want, pressurise all you want [but] as long as we are alive, we are standing with Nawaz Sharif."

    The election for the Senate chairman and deputy chairman will be held through secret ballot on Friday (March 12).

    The contest for the Senate chairman and deputy chairman seems to be tough for the government as the opposition enjoys a majority in the upper house of parliament. It is impossible for the government to win the polls unless some opposition members either vote for the government's candidates or waste their votes during the secret ballot.

    Meanwhile, in a video message, PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif alleged that Maryam had been threatened that "she would be smashed if she does not retreat".

    He did not specify who made the threats but went on to warn “those issuing threats in a God-like tone”, saying if somebody does something nefarious, he would hold Prime Minister Imran and the military’s top brass responsible.

    "Everything you have done and continue to do is a grievous crime for which you will have to answer very soon," he added.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Last Monetarist View Post
    These losers never stop. They could have easily passed a Constitutional amendment to stop all the corrupt practices which they promised in COD and when others use what they want to use, they cry foul. These crooks need to be eliminated by whatever method available

  52. #52
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    A Senate election already marred with controversies became murkier on Friday after "hidden" cameras were found in the polling booth ahead of voting for the chairman and deputy chairman slots.

    The special session got off to a noisy start as the opposition, led by PPP's Raza Rabbani, claimed that "secret cameras" had been installed at the polling booth. "This is against Article 226 of the Constitution," he said, as the house resounded with "shame, shame".

    The opposition demanded that an investigation be carried out into who was "in control of the Senate".

    The protest prompted the presiding officer to issue directives for changing the polling booth. "The current polling booth should be removed, another should be set up afresh," he said.

    Earlier in the day, PPP Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar claimed that he and PML-N Senator Musadiq Malik found "spy cameras" above the polling booth.

    On his twitter account, Malik said: "What a freaking joke. The Senate polling booth has secret /hidden cameras installed. SO MUCH FOR DEMOCRACY."

    He also claimed to have found another "hidden device" in the polling booth.

    Meanwhile, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry responded to Khokhar's tweet, stating that it looked "more like a CCTV cable" and that "spy cameras are far more sophisticated".

    The Senate secretary should look into this claim, he said.

    In another tweet, he shared an "example" of a spy camera. "The camera can be fitted in the head of a nail. The detection of such cameras is impossible. In all likelihood, the CCTV camera cable has been misunderstood as a spy camera," he theorised.

    Govt vows to 'expose' opposition

    Speaking at a press conference, Information Minister Shibli Faraz vowed to investigate the incident and "expose" the opposition.

    Many Senate officers were appointed during the tenure of the opposition parties, he said. "They have been doing this for a long time; this is evident from the video of Ali Gilani teaching MNAs how to waste votes," he said.

    He said that the PTI's stance has always been clear and is in front of the people. "We have always wanted corruption to be removed and open voting to come into play."

    He maintained that a new polling booth should be set up, adding that the opposition had conspired to install the cameras. The minister stated that if the government wished to make such moves, it would have done so during the Senate polls.

    "Even though they are thieves, they want to portray themselves as the victims. We will uncover who was behind this," he said. "How did they know that cameras were present? They did it themselves," he said.

    Senators take oath

    During the morning session, Senator Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah administered the oath to the 48 members. After taking the oath, the Senators signed the roll of members.

    Announcing the schedule for the election of the Senate deputy and chairman, the presiding officer said that the candidates can file their nomination papers in the office of the Senate secretary by noon. The scrutiny process will take place at 12:30pm. The candidates can withdraw their nomination papers any time before the election.

    The session has been adjourned till 3pm.

    Former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani (PPP) and Maulana Abdul Gha*foor Haideri (JUI-F) have been fielded by the Pakistan Democratic Movement as its joint candidates for the posts of chairman and deputy chairman, respectively.

    The government had alre*a*dy announced that outgoing Senate Chairman Muha*mmad Sadiq Sanjrani will be its candidate for the office for another term. On Thursday, Prime Minister Imran Khan nominated Senator Mirza Moha*m*mad Afridi — a billionaire from erstwhile Fata — for the post of the deputy chairman.

    Who do the numbers favour?

    Though the opposition enjoys a clear majority in the Senate to win both the seats, political pundits say it is going to be a close contest and any deviation from party policy and wastage of votes in secret ballot can translate into an upset.

    Back in August 2019, Senate Chairman Sanjrani had survived no-confidence vote when only 50 votes were cast in favour of the opposition’s motion when 53 votes were needed of the 104-member House for success of the move, 45 senators had voted against the motion and five votes were rejected. Interestingly, earlier when the resolution was moved for no-confidence motion, 64 opposition members had supported it.

    Now, the senators of the ruling coalition include 27 members of the PTI, 12 of Balochistan Awami Party, three of MQM, three independents and one each of PML-Q and GDA. The opposition senators include 21 of PPP, 17 of PML-N, excluding Ishaq Dar who has not taken oath of the office, five of JUI-F, two each of ANP, BNP-Mengal, PkMAP and National Party and one of Jamaat-i-Islami. The opposition collectively has 52 members in the House excluding Mr Dar, against 47 senators belonging to the ruling coalition. As the Jamaat-i-Islami has decided to abstain from voting, the difference between the vote bank of the government and the opposition has narrowed down to four.

    After the Senate elections on March 3, the House strength has been reduced to 100 senators and now it consists of 99 senators, as Ishaq Dar is in self-exile and has not taken oath as a senator. Likewise, JI Senator Sirajul Haq has reportedly announced to stay away from the election and this brings the strength of the opposition to 51 senators.

    https://www.dawn.com/news/1612088/sp...chief-election


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

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    Hidden cameras found ahead of senate chairman election

    For all the talks by our pm, for all the stuff he said about democracy and vote selling, under hia own govt cameras had been installed for chairman election.


    And before anyone comes into this thread to say opposition installed cameras, security heads of senate are under the govt, no one could enter senate after 5

    Security head is of the federal govt
    Ecp and federal govt heads everything

    Yet now sibli is claiming opposition installed them


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  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Major View Post
    For all the talks by our pm, for all the stuff he said about democracy and vote selling, under hia own govt cameras had been installed for chairman election.


    And before anyone comes into this thread to say opposition installed cameras, security heads of senate are under the govt, no one could enter senate after 5

    Security head is of the federal govt
    Ecp and federal govt heads everything

    Yet now sibli is claiming opposition installed them
    And PK agencies are so basic that they would use technology from the 1960s. You can buy better technology on ebay. At least get something credible.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    And PK agencies are so basic that they would use technology from the 1960s. You can buy better technology on ebay. At least get something credible.
    If thats what imrans govt could afford than that is really worrying.

    But this is pure lannat on this govt, they have no right to talk about democracy after this.


    "Life is Pain"
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  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Major View Post
    If thats what imrans govt could afford than that is really worrying.

    But this is pure lannat on this govt, they have no right to talk about democracy after this.
    More like the crooks wanted something controversial after the humiliation of being red handed buying votes with the money stolen off the poor in Sindh. Remind me what Shah said, wasnt it something like 10 cr for contratcs, which 50% is yours. Lannat is on all off you that cant even bring yourself to comment on blatant criminality and corruption. Remember you may get a few crumbs off AZs table but you and your children are ghulam. This is your punishment.

    Here is reminder for losers like you. Why didnt start a thread on this

  57. #57
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    @Major
    I see as usual the evidence does not agree with your immorality. Ghulami of crooks can never save you, and smell the coffee.What happened to your crooks today? This pathetic drama to hide from the fact that even the stolen billions from the poor of Sindh could not buy the Senate leadership.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    @Major
    I see as usual the evidence does not agree with your immorality. Ghulami of crooks can never save you, and smell the coffee.What happened to your crooks today? This pathetic drama to hide from the fact that even the stolen billions from the poor of Sindh could not buy the Senate leadership.
    alot of tissue papers both in the media and in politics are going to be used today.

    watching ARY at the moment..a very interesting conversation between some of our most senior anchors and experts lol..

    Looks like Shibli Faraz's words that they would no longer play nice has come to fruition.
    I hope IK will now hit a few more sixes and get some bills through the house as quickly as possible. They need to steam roll these bills through..

  59. #59
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1612088/de...-chairman-slot

    PTI candidate Sadiq Sanjrani won another term as the Senate chairman on Friday in a blow to the joint opposition — despite the latter having a majority in the Upper House.

    The opposition challenged the result of the election after it was announced that seven votes cast in favour of opposition candidate Yousuf Raza Gilani were rejected.

    However, presiding officer Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah overruled their objection, saying the seven votes were rejected because they were not stamped correctly. Another vote was rejected because it had been cast in favour of both the candidates.

    With a total of eight votes rejected, Gilani received 42 valid votes, while Sanjrani won the election after bagging 48 votes. In total, 98 senators voted in the election.

    Polling began after 3pm, and an officer called out names of senators in alphabetical order who collected ballot papers from officials and cast their votes at the polling booth.

    JUI-F's Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri was the first senator to be called to make his choice.

    Shah, who cast the last vote, announced around 4:40 that all 98 senators present in the house had cast their votes after which the counting began at 5pm.

    After being declared the winner, Sanjrani took the oath of his office and is now presiding over the election for the Senate deputy chairman.

    Former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani (PPP) and Maulana Abdul Gha*foor Haideri (JUI-F) were fielded by the opposition Pakistan Democratic Movement as its joint candidates for the posts of chairman and deputy chairman, respectively.

    The government had already announced that Sanjrani will be its candidate for the office for another term. On Thursday, Prime Minister Imran Khan nominated Senator Mirza Mohammad Afridi — a billionaire from erstwhile Fata — for the post of the deputy chairman.

    Shah, who earlier administered the oath to all 48 newly elected members of the Upper House, read out the names of the candidates contesting for the positions as well as the senators sponsoring them.

    He also directed that a body be formed comprising equal number of senators from the government and the opposition to investigate the matter of "hidden" cameras found earlier in the session.

    "Recovered items like cameras and otherwise, will be secured and sealed till the final disposal of the matter," he said.

    The presiding officer further said a new polling booth had been established and asked representatives from both sides to inspect them.

    Though the opposition enjoys a clear majority in the Senate to win both the seats, political pundits say it is going to be a close contest and any deviation from party policy and wastage of votes in secret ballot can translate into an upset.

    Back in August 2019, Senate Chairman Sanjrani had survived no-confidence vote when only 50 votes were cast in favour of the opposition’s motion against the 53 needed in the 104-member House for the move to succeed. Forty five senators had voted against the motion and five votes were rejected. Interestingly, earlier when the resolution was moved for the no-confidence motion, 64 opposition members had supported it.

    After the Senate elections on March 3, the House strength has been reduced to 100 senators and now it consists of 99 senators, as Ishaq Dar is in self-exile and has not taken oath as a senator.

    Now, the senators of the ruling coalition include 27 members of the PTI, 12 of Balochistan Awami Party, three of MQM, three independents and one each of PML-Q and PML-F – which is part of the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA).

    The opposition senators include 21 of PPP, 17 of PML-N, excluding Ishaq Dar who has not taken oath of the office, five of JUI-F, two each of ANP, BNP-Mengal, PkMAP and National Party and one of Jamaat-i-Islami. The opposition collectively has 52 members in the House excluding Mr Dar, against 47 senators belonging to the ruling coalition. As the Jamaat-i-Islami has decided to abstain from voting, the difference between the vote bank of the government and the opposition has narrowed down to four.

    Earlier, the special session got off to a noisy start as the opposition, led by PPP's Raza Rabbani, claimed that "secret cameras" had been installed at the polling booth. "This is against Article 226 of the Constitution," he said, as the house resounded with chants of "shame, shame".

    The opposition demanded that an investigation be carried out into who was "in control of the Senate".

    The protest prompted the presiding officer to issue directives for changing the polling booth. "The current polling booth should be removed, another should be set up afresh," he said.

    Earlier in the day, PPP Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar claimed that he and PML-N Senator Musadiq Malik found "spy cameras" above the polling booth.

    On his twitter account, Malik said: "What a freaking joke. The Senate polling booth has secret /hidden cameras installed. SO MUCH FOR DEMOCRACY."

    He also claimed to have found another "hidden device" in the polling booth.

    The two opposition leaders also wrote a letter to the presiding officer asking for the formation of a Senate committee to probe the incident. In the letter, the Senators said that they discovered four cameras "obviously installed to record votes to be cast" during the scrutiny of the polling booth.

    It said that the incident was a "great blow" to democracy, rule of law, the Constitution and the recent opinion by the Supreme Court that the Senate polls be held by secret ballot.

    The letter proposed the formation of a Senate committee consisting of an equal number of members from the treasury and the opposition. It also proposed the recovered cameras be secured and sealed till the final disposal of the matter.

    Meanwhile, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry responded to Khokhar's tweet, stating that it looked "more like a CCTV cable" and that "spy cameras are far more sophisticated".

    The Senate secretary should look into this claim, he said.

    In another tweet, he shared an "example" of a spy camera. "The camera can be fitted in the head of a nail. The detection of such cameras is impossible. In all likelihood, the CCTV camera cable has been misunderstood as a spy camera," he theorised.

    PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz also lashed out at the government, calling them "habitual, certified vote stealers".

    "They have become so panicked that they have resorted to using cameras to spy on their own members when phoning agencies proved to be futile."

    After the Result Transmission System (RTS) and Daska by-poll fiasco, those making a last ditch effort to rob the Senate have lost the last battle, she said. "The Constitution mentions secret vote not secret cameras. Vote stealers have some shame and [resign] from your offices."

    After the Parliament and the opposition refused to give an NRO to the vote stealers, after failing to use the election commission and the apex court for your own gains, it is a serious crime to disrespect the Constitution, she said. "Even the selectors must regret [the situation] they have gotten themselves into," she said.

    Speaking at a press conference, Information Minister Shibli Faraz vowed to investigate the incident and "expose" the opposition.

    Many Senate officers were appointed during the tenure of the opposition parties, he said. "They have been doing this for a long time; this is evident from the video of Ali Gilani teaching MNAs how to waste votes," he said.

    He said that the PTI's stance has always been clear and is in front of the people. "We have always wanted corruption to be removed and open voting to come into play."

    He maintained that a new polling booth should be set up, adding that the opposition had conspired to install the cameras. The minister stated that if the government wished to make such moves, it would have done so during the Senate polls.

    "Even though they are thieves, they want to portray themselves as the victims. We will uncover who was behind this," he said. "How did they know that cameras were present? They did it themselves," he said.

    Shortly after his press conference, the minister reiterated that the opposition's "sinister" plan had been exposed. He claimed that they used "criminal tactics" to sway the Senate polls in their favour.

    "That’s why the PDM opposed open ballot. The era of loot and plunder taking its last breath," he said.

    During the morning session, Senator Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah administered the oath to the 48 members. After taking the oath, the Senators signed the roll of members.

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    alot of tissue papers both in the media and in politics are going to be used today.

    watching ARY at the moment..a very interesting conversation between some of our most senior anchors and experts lol..

    Looks like Shibli Faraz's words that they would no longer play nice has come to fruition.
    I hope IK will now hit a few more sixes and get some bills through the house as quickly as possible. They need to steam roll these bills through..
    If IK doesnt make the life of these crooks absolute hell, then he would have failed to do what he was elected to do. I agree for the 1st time the govt played the same game these crooks played. These haraamis want IK to read Namaz whilst they get drunk on mafia power. This is humiliating for @Major and @Mamoon who had to put the champagne on hold. Just imagine the celebrations of these ghulams of the corrupt immoral mafia, if this crook won.

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    the humiliation continues. Deputy chairman also from govt side. Lol..the crying and ripping of hair on the streets has started.

    So which one of the patwari party and the wadera chaors will run to the airport in the next week.

    IK needs to destroy them now in the next 24 months and ensure a PTI victory with a landslide in the next election. Send these **** to jail.

    Where is that chaor Bilawal? maybe sitting eating burgers to ensure he puts on a few more pounds. I'm sure the country cant wait to hear is pathetic attempt at urdu.
    I mean I learnt Urdu within a year and became fluent with an accent.

    Oh my gosh the deputy chairman wins by 10 votes..destruction of PDM continues!! hahahaha

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    the humiliation continues. Deputy chairman also from govt side. Lol..the crying and ripping of hair on the streets has started.

    So which one of the patwari party and the wadera chaors will run to the airport in the next week.

    IK needs to destroy them now in the next 24 months and ensure a PTI victory with a landslide in the next election. Send these **** to jail.

    Where is that chaor Bilawal? maybe sitting eating burgers to ensure he puts on a few more pounds. I'm sure the country cant wait to hear is pathetic attempt at urdu.
    I mean I learnt Urdu within a year and became fluent with an accent.

    Oh my gosh the deputy chairman wins by 10 votes..destruction of PDM continues!! hahahaha
    @Mamoon
    Should Billo, Maryam and AZ resign after this humiliation. They spend stolen billions to back a thief with 2 crooked sons, one of whom is drug dealer and the other one who bribes politicians.

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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    He'll dissappear for a few days and then ask one of his online bhakt friends how to deal with this..lol
    Probably getting pointers from the army of trolls employed online.

    I hope now the PTI can just do what they need to. They have smashed the PDM now..the infighting between the PDM will now begin lol
    IK needs to show his public support and get the establishment and the courts to stop protecting the chors.


    "Too often we... enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought"-JFK

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    Winning both chairman and deputy chairman seats would be a huge blow for PDM. Already we have started to see PMLN starting to disassociate itself from rising PPP power.

    I hope one day we are free from this secret balloting.

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    I know its a move fraught with danger but he needs to take on the crooked judiciary in the both the LHC and IHC. PK needs to move away from choosing judges from the crooked bar associations and then work from there into the lower courts. ATM the SC has 3 mafia judges on its books- Afridi, Isa and Beqir are all mafia appointments and they need to be dealt with. Sooner or later the mafia have to feel the wrath of the state.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extra_Cover View Post
    Winning both chairman and deputy chairman seats would be a huge blow for PDM. Already we have started to see PMLN starting to disassociate itself from rising PPP power.

    I hope one day we are free from this secret balloting.
    Billo and AZ have humiliated the Nooras. In the whole process the Nooras have got nothing, and Billo looks like the opposition, and Nani looks like a lost child, lashing out at everyone and everything.

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Billo and AZ have humiliated the Nooras. In the whole process the Nooras have got nothing, and Billo looks like the opposition, and Nani looks like a lost child, lashing out at everyone and everything.
    the PPP would rather have the PTI in power or in opposition than Nawaz patwari. They hate them with a passion. At every step Ganja has been check mated by mr 10%. They are prepared to watch teh PMLN die in punjab as long as they keep Sind forever. They have realised they dont even need national power after the 18th amendment. Bus Sind zaroori hay.

    They have also messed up maulana Phazlu and his gang of hypocrites. Basically IK with the help of zardari just destroyed the PDM today.

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    Biloo ranni press conference at the moment. Annoying individual. Blaming the army now lol..

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    Hypocrite, never mentions the recorded incidents and the lifafa journos give him such an easy time..clearly the west's preferred candidate.

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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1612212/pa...-in-court-govt

    Despite internal rift over nomination of Senator Mirza Mohammad Afridi for the office of Senate deputy chairman, the ruling alliance on Friday managed to defeat the candidates of the opposition Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) in the elections for the posts of chairman and deputy chairman and claimed that the proceedings of any of the two houses of parliament could not be challenged in a court of law.

    Senator Mohsin Aziz of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), who was polling agent of Sadiq Sanjrani in the election of Senate chairman, said in a TV programme that according to Rules of Procedure & Conduct of Business in Senate 2012, the proceedings of the Senate and National Assembly could not be challenged in the court of law.

    He rejected the opposition’s contention that seven votes cast in favour of PDM candidate Yousuf Raza Gilani were illegally rejected and said the opposition members had intentionally wasted their votes. “They wasted their votes either under pressure or any commitment as they were not ready to vote for PDM,” he claimed, adding that these seven voters of the PDM came up openly in favour of the government’s candidate for the slot of deputy chairman.

    Insiders said there was some reservation in the PTI rank on the nomination of Mr Afridi, but it was later well managed by the party leadership. Some top leaders of the PTI were of the view that the deputy chairman should be from Punjab and had proposed the names of party leaders Ijaz Chaudhry, Saifullah Niazi and Aun Abbas Bappi.

    In the morning, the newly elected senators took the oath and later a luncheon was hosted for them at a banquet hall of the Parliament House. Before the election of Senate chairman and deputy chairman, the defence minister took all senators of the ruling alliance to a hall in the Parliament House for a final meeting during which he asked the senators to vote for the government candidates at any cost.

    Interestingly, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) removed an ambiguity about its stance on the election shortly before the poll when Senator Faisal Subzwari joined the meeting almost when it concluded.

    Some close aides to Prime Minister Imran Khan were standing in the corridor, outside the meeting hall, and passing information on to him through mobile messaging about who was attending the meeting and who turned up there at what time.

    Syed Muzaffar Ali Shah, who was appointed presiding officer for the election by President Dr Arif Alvi, also attended the meeting as a member of the government alliance (Grand Democratic Alliance from Sindh). He was the first senator who had left the meeting hall. Following the meeting, all the senators went directly to the Senate hall for taking part in the elections.

    Later, talking to media outside the Parliament House, Minister for Information Senator Shibli Faraz said that with the defeat of Mr Gilani in the Senate chairman election, the politics of PDM, which revolved around personal interests, had doomed.

    Flanked by Senator Faisal Javed Khan, he said Prime Minister Khan and his allies were striving to ensure transparency in the electoral process by moving a bill in parliament and sending a reference to the Supreme Court.

    Mr Faraz said the prime minister had made all-out efforts to stop misuse of money, and sale and purchase of votes in the Senate elections. Accordingly, he added, the government had introduced amendments to the relevant laws in parliament and also approached the apex court for open balloting, but the opposition parties had opposed it.

    He said Imran Khan wanted the country to move towards progress and prosperity, by eliminating the old system which had ruined the economy, ethics and democratic norms. On the contrary, those who had opposed transparency in the electoral system were against the country’s progress, he said, adding that the people should strengthen Imran Khan’s hands.

    “Gilani’s defeat was in fact the defeat of old corrupt system and the narrative of corrupt politicians and their promoters,” he added.

    The minister said the PDM had started its so-called movement from a long march, and then gave a deadline for resignations from assemblies, but nothing had happened so far. He said the opposition parties made a malicious attempt to breach the secrecy of ballot, but it was exposed with the detection of hidden cameras installed by them around the polling booth. “Similar drama was staged by their leaders outside parliament on the day of PM’s vote of confidence.”

    Mr Faraz said that with the blessings of Allah Almighty, Sadiq Sanjrani, a brave and upright person, got a success, and those who believed in malpractices were humiliated with replay of their own rejected votes saga.

    The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz should better question its own members whether they had availed the services of Ali Haider Gilani for getting their votes rejected, he added. He said the opposition parties’ corrupt practices could be judged from the fact that they managed to win the Senate seat of Yousuf Raza Gilani despite minimum number of votes in the National Assembly.

  71. #71
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  72. #72
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    JHELUM: Federal Minister for IT Fawad Chaudhry has claimed the PML-N and the PPP are suspicious of each other after the Opposition's shock defeat in the Senate elections held yesterday for the chairman and deputy chairman's posts.

    "God has given PTI victory," Chaudhry said. "We won [Senate seats] from each of the [five] assemblies."

    "There is a need to make the Senate election process more transparent. The PML-N and the PPP are now suspicious of each other. All these parties only got together out of spite for Imran Khan," he said.

    Referring to the PDM's announcement that they will approach the courts to challenge the results of the Senate chairman election, Chaudhry said: "They will not getting anything from the courts — Sanjrani is chairman Senate now."

    A day earlier, Chaudhry had spoken on a TV talk show and suggested that the government was still willing to sit with the Opposition to introduce electoral reforms.

    He had noted that Prime Minister Imran Khan wanted to hold Senate elections through an open ballot, yet the opposition did not support him.

    He claimed that the result was that most of the PML-N senators did not want to cast their votes in favour of Yousaf Raza Gillani.

    He said the government and opposition would have to sit together as dialogue was the only solution to all problems and that the doors are never closed in a democratic system.


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  73. #73
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    The crooks are falling out amongst themselves and even Billo has joined in, he is toying with the Nooras. The Nooras are getting humiliated on every issue and don't know where to turn. He humiliated Talal Ch yesterday and the Nooras didn't even respond.

    Chaudhry, in a tweet following the defeat, said: "Bilawal sahab! (Mr Bilawal) did you have fun with [institutions] being neutral?"

    Meanwhile, Bilawal, when asked about the leader's comments during a press conference, said: "Talal sahab (Mr Talal) this isn't tanzeem saazi. It is a democratic struggle."
    https://nation.com.pk/13-Mar-2021/bi...talal-chaudhry

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by the Great Khan View Post
    Hypocrite, never mentions the recorded incidents and the lifafa journos give him such an easy time..clearly the west's preferred candidate.
    It looks like the PPP use the billions from Sindh kitty to fund their criminality. The media can't ask even basic questions of this loser brought up on haraam

  75. #75
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1613731/se...ballots-to-ppp

    The Senate Secretariat has refused to provide ballots of the recently-held election for the chairman of the upper house to the legal team of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) but seems to have conceded to the jurisdiction of the court to intervene.

    The PPP’s legal team, which also has three former Senate chairmen among its members, comprises Farooq H. Naek, Raza Rabbani, Nayyar Hussain Bukhari, former Punjab governor Sardar Latif Khan Khosa and Javed Iqbal Wains.

    The team has sought certified copies of the proceedings of the Senate chairman election held on March 12.

    The joint opposition’s candidate, Yousuf Raza Gil*ani, lost the election after seven of his votes were rejected. If they had been counted, he could have defeated Sadiq Sanjrani by one vote.

    The team required certified copies of all the activities in the upper house on March 12 to challenge the rejection of votes before an appropriate forum.

    The Senate Secretariat remained closed from Mar*ch 15 to 17 on account of disinfection for Covid-19. The Secretariat, in a letter add*ressed to Senator Naek and advocate Wains on March 18, said: “All proceedings of the Senate held on 12th March, 2021, are available in verbatim in the Hansard, that includes decision of the Presiding Officer on votes, declaration of elections to the office of Chairman Senate, and arguments by Senator Farooq Hamid Naek, polling agent for Senator Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani.”

    The Secretariat, however, provided details of the proceedings and the transcript to the counsel for Senator Gilani.

    It also provided the record of the communication from the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs regarding the nomination of the presiding officer by President Dr Arif Alvi to the legal team.

    However, regarding the report about installation of hidden cameras which were traced ahead of the polling, the Secretariat said, “the cameras, booth and other material were sealed in the presence of senators before the process of election of the chairman began and some of those present there made videos and photographs from their cell phones. The Secretariat made no official video or photographs of the same.”

    A certified copy of the ‘Instructions to Senators’ for casting the votes was also supplied to the lawyers.

    Rejecting the request to handover ballots, the Secretariat stated: “All ballots were sealed and placed in safe custody on 12th March, 2021, on completion of election process as per practice and application by Senator Farooq Hamid Naek submitted to the secretary the same evening.”

    It further said: “In terms of Rule 258 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Senate, 2012, the competent authority has decided that the ballots are to be de-sealed only if asked for by a court of law.”

    It may be mentioned here that the presiding officer for the Senate chairman polls, Muzaffar Hussain Shah, has asked Farooq H. Naek, the polling agent of Mr Gilani, to file a complaint before a tribunal if he was not satisfied with the decision of rejection of votes.

    The lawmakers of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, on the other hand, have consistently been saying that the proceedings in the Senate cannot be challenged in any court of law.

    According to advocate Wains, the Senate letter is self explanatory and has clearly suggested that the court should be approached.

    Even otherwise, he said, there are a number of instances where the superior courts have intervened and even over-ruled the ruling of the National Assembly speaker.

    He said the case was very simple; “we expect the court to answer the one-line question: whether a stamp within the box of candidate is disenfranchisement of the voter.”

    Advocate Wains said bar of Article 69 was not applicable to this case since the presiding officer himself had advised advocate Naek to file the application in the tribunal and the Senate Secretariat had repeated the same stance.

    According to him, the petition may be filed anytime next week.

    As per Supreme Court advocate Kashif Ali Malik, the superior courts, on a number of occasions, have validated rejected votes.

    In 1987, the apex court dealt with the issue of ballot papers on which the prescribed mark to indicate the candidate in whose favour the vote was cast was put outside the area containing the name and symbol of the contesting candidate for whom the voter was supposed to have voted.

    In 1966, the apex court had decided an issue where the ballot papers had borne the official seal but no signatures of the presiding officer. Twelve ballot papers contained chits bearing the words ‘Bismillah’ and 14 ballot papers had currency notes enclosed.

    The rejected votes were allowed by the presiding officer to be counted as valid votes by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) member. The high court set aside this order.

    However, the apex court ruled that unless there was something to reveal a previous arrangement, mere presence of a mark or even currency note on a ballot paper was not sufficient to identify the electors.

    The existence of a mark in the absence of a proof of arrangement does not identify the voter.

    In 1981, the apex court decided an appeal in which five votes which were wrongly excluded from the count were re-examined by the returning officer, and accordingly the petitioner was declared as the returned candidate.

    It held that any other mark besides the official mark and the prescribed mark would not render the ballot invalid. It ruled that the clear principle for the guidance of presiding officers is that if the ballot paper unambiguously reveals the election of the elector cast his vote in favour of a particular candidate the presence of other marks will not render the vote invalid and the vote will be counted in favour of the candidate for whom the vote appears to have been cast.

    In 1988, the apex court decided the issue of marking of ballot papers with Roman numerals instead of English or Urdu numerals. It was held that the votes could only be rejected when with pre-arrangement the identity was disclosed. There is nothing to show that this has been done and there is no such allegation levelled. The intention of the voter is clear as such ballot papers cannot be rejected on this ground.

    In 1995, the Supreme Court ruled that where on account of the act of the voter himself the secrecy of the ballot was violated, even in such a case the settled principle of law by the superior courts is that before the rejection of such papers it has to be pleaded first and then proved through evidence that the same was the result of a prior understanding between a voter and the candidate.

  76. #76
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    https://www.dawn.com/news/1614041/bi...-senate-office

    The Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) has decided to support the candidature of Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani for the opposition leader in the Senate, agreeing to PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto’s contention that the majority party has the right to the slot.

    After developing differences with the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) on the resignations and leader of the opposition issues in the Senate, Mr Bhutto-Zardari not only won JI’s support for the Senate slot but also found many other common grounds to work with the party: electoral reforms, accountability, independence of the Election Commission of Pakistan and the Kashmir cause.

    After his maiden visit to the JI headquarters, addressing a joint press conference with emir Sirajul Haq, Mr Bhutto-Zardari hoped that though it was his first visit, it would certainly not be last. Dialogue is necessary among parties and the PPP has a lot to learn from the JI’s political experience spread over many decades of history.

    He took the occasion to taunt Maryam Nawaz – hinting at thewidening divide that now exists between both parties and personalities – saying that “the blood that runs in his veins can never be that of a “selected,” it was rather a Lahore family that was once selected”. He was responding to a tweet by Maryam Nawaz a few days ago in which she had said “maybe another selected being anointed”.

    The widening of the schism between both parties also became clearer when Bilawal insisted that the party enjoying a majority in the Senate has the right to nominate “leader of the opposition”. That is what the parliamentary tradition is and must be respected. “To us, Gilani has won the senate (chairman) election and it would soon be formalized (through court).

    Continuing settling a verbal score with the PML-N, he also said that “accountability of the generals may bea new-found slogan for Nawaz Sharif and the PML-N, but this has been the demand of the PPP leadership for three generations”.

    Mr Bhutto-Zardari also expressed regrets that the long march has been delayed. “After all, whose idea was it to link long march with the resignations? If that is the case, why was it not taken up when the march was originally planned? The PPP had made all the preparations for the long march and was ready for it.”

    Balancing his earlier hardstand, Mr Bhutto-Zardari also said that the divisions in the opposition would benefit (Prime Minister) Imran Khan. “If someone has to reconsider his opinion and decision, it must be the one insisting on wrong decisions. The situation is ripe for change both in the National Assembly and the Punjab Assembly.”

    Earlier, Mr Haq said political parties should continue talking to each other because only then solutions to “common man’s problems can be found, which the PTI in its 1,100 days rule has multiplied many folds.”

    The PTI has proven that it wants a compliant judiciary, a subordinate election commission, and very subservient media.

    “All these streaks not onlyreflect dictatorial mindset but are also suicidal for democracy. The opposition parties must join hands to resist them. They should find ways for legal and financial autonomy of these institutions because they are necessary for functioning democracy and welfare of common man.”

  77. #77
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    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2291209...-slot-election

    The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday dismissed former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's petition against the rejection of seven votes by the presiding officer during the election of Senate chairman.

    On March 12, the ruling PTI-backed candidates grabbed the top slots of the Senate in a “controversial contest” marred by the discovery of “spy cameras” in the polling booths.

    In the polls, incumbent Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani was re-elected. He had defeated Gilani, a joint candidate of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) – an opposition parties’ alliance.

    Ninety-eight senators had exercised their right to vote, out of which seven votes – most of which cast in favour of Gilani, were rejected. Sanjrani who had received 48 votes as opposed to 42 votes of Gilani was later declared the winner by the presiding officer, Senator Muzaffar Hussain Shah.

    The judgement said that the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) is the supreme legislative organ of the state and it represents the people of Pakistan and maintaining its dignity, respect and independence is of paramount importance and constitutional duty of other branches of the state.

    "It is the highest forum for, inter alia, resolving national issues and political disputes. The parliamentary privileges, powers and immunities have been expressly incorporated in the Constitution," the ruling stated.

    Justice Minallah, in his judgement, said that the language used by the framers of the Constitution is unambiguous and effective in order to prevent a court from encroaching upon the independence of parliament. "It is based on the principle of constitutional separation between the three branches of the State i.e. the judiciary, legislature and the executive."

    He said that the privileges and powers embedded in the Constitution are aimed at protecting the integrity of the parliamentary proceedings so that parliament is enabled to perform its functions with the appropriate degree of independence.

    "The Houses of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) are empowered to regulate their respective proceedings and the Constitution clearly prevents the courts from inquiring into its validity. Any attempt by a court to interfere in the proceedings of the Houses by calling into question its validity is likely to undermine the dignity, prestige and independence of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) on the one hand while, on the other, it exposes the apex constitutional legislative forum to undesirable and unwarranted criticism."

    Justice Minallah said that any encroachment by the judicial branch in the realm of the validity of proceedings of the Parliament inevitably has consequences, which adversely affects public interest. "It erodes the sanctity of the supreme legislative constitutional forum besides weakening the sovereignty, independence and prestige of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). Such intrusions by the courts profoundly affects the confidence of the people in the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament)," the order stated.

    He observed that the judicial branch is not only to perform its functions impartially but has to be seen as such by the stakeholders i.e. the people of Pakistan. "It is for this reason that courts ought to exercise greater restraint in disputes which could be resolved by the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) itself."

    The court said that an effective, independent and functional parliament is the sole panacea for ensuring the well-being and prosperity of the nation. "The security and integrity of the state also depends on the institutional strength and sovereignty of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). Article 69 is, therefore, to be understood and interpreted in this context and on the touchstone of the cardinal principle of constitutional separation of powers between organs of the state," it added.

    The IHC judgement further stated that the respect, prestige, dignity and independence of parliament is in the hands of the chosen representatives and thus it is their duty to "jealously guard" against unwarranted intrusions by other branches in its proceedings.

    "Every member solemnly swears to perform functions honestly, to the best of his or her ability, faithfully and always in the interest of the sovereignty, integrity, solidarity, well-being and prosperity of Pakistan. Every word of the oath taken in the name of Allah, the most Beneficent and the most Merciful, has to be given respect."

    It said that the success, effectiveness and independence of parliament rested on the commitment of the chosen representatives to prevent breaches of the constitutional privileges, powers and immunities embedded in the Constitution.

    "It is an onerous duty of the political leadership and every chosen representative to prevent the judicial branch from exercising the power of judicial review relating to the proceedings of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament), which are privileged and protected under Article 69 of the Constitution," the judgement stated.

    "The grievance of the Petitioner in the matter in hand exclusively pertains to questioning the validity of proceedings of the upper House of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament) and thus it is immune from interference by this Court under Article 69 of the Constitution."

    The judgement added that the process of election to the office of chairman of the Senate of Pakistan is definitely not administrative in nature and rather a formal transaction of business of the Upper House and can be fairly described as its internal proceedings.

    "The entire process is thus wholly outside the corrective jurisdiction of a High Court. Even if it was not so, this Court would have exercised restraint because of its deference to the independence, dignity and prestige of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). The very nature of the composition and status of the two Houses is such that the court has to presume that it has the ability to resolve the most difficult and complex disputes without involving the judicial branch. The Petition is, therefore, not maintainable."

    The court noted that the petitioner asserted that, as a joint candidate of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), he has the support of the majority of the worthy members of the Senate, adding that It is obvious that the majority cannot only remove current Chairman Senate but also elect the Gilani to the office of the Chairman.

    "If that is the case, then a democratic and adequate constitutional remedy is available to the Petitioner (Gilani). Adopting such a course of remedy would affirm the support of the majority of the worthy members of the Senate and, simultaneously, enhance the dignity and independence of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament).

    The order further stated that the court is satisfied that an adequate constitutional remedy is indeed available for establishing that the seven worthy senators had actually intended to cast their votes in favour of Gilani.

    "In such an eventuality the judicial branch ought to exercise restraint, notwithstanding the bar contained under Article 69 of the Constitution."

  78. #78
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    Prime Minister Imran Khan is expected to announce a cabinet reshuffle as soon as next Monday, potentially replacing several ministers and picking up some new faces as he is reportedly not happy with some key ministers’ performance and has already conveyed that only those would stay in the cabinet who can deliver.

    Despite testing positive for Covid-19 a few days ago, the prime minister has conducted different meetings, gauged the performance of ministers, deliberated upon swapping portfolios of several cabinet members, mulled over the names of new lawmakers that are to be included in the cabinet and, finally, pondered over who will be replaced.

    “Prime Minister will announce the changes made in the federal cabinet by next Monday,” Senator Shibli Faraz told The Express Tribune. The Senator said that discussions were still underway as to whose portfolio should be replaced with whom and why. “Performance is the parameter,” he said, adding that potential was the other factor.

    Faraz, who held the portfolio of information ministry before his term as a senator was completed and after he took a fresh oath being elected again earlier, said that the premier has also decided to give a chance to some new faces.

    “Three-to-four new people are expected to be given state-minister level portfolios,” Faraz said, adding that lawmakers in the assembly are likely to be given a chance. He refrained himself from revealing the names, saying that the premier would do by next Monday.

    On March 1, it was reported that the federal cabinet was expected to undergo a reshuffle after the much-anticipated Senate elections.

    Party sources had revealed that performance and delivery were the only things that the premier was interested in as he felt exhausted by hearing excuse after excuse and projects suffering inordinate delays in completion for one reason or another for a long time.

    “It’s time to deliver and the prime minister has this realisation,” a key federal minister had revealed while requesting anonymity. “Frustration is growing within the party circles and the premier strongly believes that the ministers must start delivering without coming up with excuses,” the minister had said.

    “The threshold for staying in the cabinet is performance,” the minister said, adding that “heads will roll after Senate polls”.

    The reshuffle is likely against a backdrop of the declining popularity of the ruling party, performance in the by-elections and losing ground to opposition parties and voters expressing their disapproval with the government’s economic policies.

    In between the Senate elections and the upcoming cabinet reshuffle, political scenario was changed to the extent that even the prime minister had to take a vote of confidence from the National Assembly after the incumbent Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Shaikh lost the federal capital’s seat in the Senate elections to the joint candidate of the opposition alliance – Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) – ex-PM Yousaf Raza Gilani, despite a clear majority in the House.

    The ruling party made a comeback in the elections of the Senate chairman and deputy chairman when the government-backed incumbent Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani and deputy chairman Mirza Muhammad Afridi defeated Gillani and JUI-F’s Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, respectively.

    Gillani was defeated when the presiding officer, Senator Muzaffar Hussain Shah, rejected seven votes while Haideri’s defeat was a result of the opposition lawmakers’ decision to cast their vote in favour of Afridi.

    Apart from the cabinet reshuffle, the premier is likely to change some of his special assistants and advisors. Since 2018 when PTI came to power, the premier has reshuffled cabinet on a number of occasions.

    Before coming to power, PM Imran was in favour of keeping a small cabinet. However, after coming to power, he ended up with a big one and now the cabinet comprises roughly 50 members, which include federal and state ministers, special assistants, and advisers.

    https://tribune.com.pk/story/2291622...et-next-monday


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