PHC Declares ECP’s Decision Unconstitutional, Restores PTI’s ‘Bat’ Symbol

Wed Jan 10 2024
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PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court (PHC) has ruled that the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision revoking the electoral symbol ‘bat’ of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and rejecting its intra-party polls unconstitutional.

The court directed the ECP to return the iconic ‘bat’ symbol to PTI and upload the party’s internal poll certificate on its website.

The PHC’s decision comes after the PTI withdrew its appeal from the Supreme Court seeking the restoration of its electoral symbol. The ECP had earlier decided against letting PTI retain its symbol for the upcoming elections, citing a failure to hold intra-party polls in accordance with prevailing constitution and election laws.

The legal battle unfolded when PTI approached the PHC against the ECP’s decision, leading to a temporary restoration of the electoral symbol until January 9. However, the high court later reinstated the ECP’s order, prompting PTI to move the Supreme Court.

During the recent hearing, PTI counsel Barrister Ali Zafar argued that the ECP, as a record keeper, did not have the authority to revoke a party’s electoral symbol. After extensive arguments, the PHC, comprising Justice Ejaz Anwar and Justice Syed Arshad Ali, announced the verdict.

The case involved 15 respondents, including the ECP and individuals challenging PTI’s intra-party polls. The PHC’s decision is crucial for PTI as it prepares for the upcoming general elections, providing a major relief and restoring the party’s electoral symbol, the ‘bat.’

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