Tuesday, May 31, 2022
LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Tuesday directed that President Arif Alvi and newly appointed Punjab Governor Muhammad Baligh Ur Rehman be made parties in the case challenging Hamza Shahbaz’s elections as chief minister.
The five-member larger bench of the LHC headed by Chief Justice Ameer Bhatti resumed the hearing on separate pleas — filed by PTI and PML-Q — against Hamza's election as CM.
At the outset of today’s hearing, Azhar Siddique, PTI’s counsel, argued that the National Assembly speaker cannot administer the oath to a chief minister as per the Constitution.
At this, the judge remarked that they wanted to hear the president and the governor.
Meanwhile, the larger bench was directed to make the president and the governor parties through their respective secretaries. The judge directed the PTI’s lawyer to make a change in the petition accordingly and adjourned the hearing till tomorrow.
A day earlier, Punjab CM Hamza Shahbaz told the LHC that the Supreme Court’s interpretation of Article 63-A does not apply to his election as the province's chief minister.
In his 16-page written reply submitted in response to the petitions challenging the PML-N leader's election as Punjab’s chief minister, Hamza Shahbaz said, “Election for the post of Punjab chief minister was held in light with the high court’s orders and as per the law and the Constitution.”
The Punjab CM election was held before the SC’s interpretation of Article 63-A, hence, the top court’s judgement will not be in this matter, argued Hamza.
Hamza Shahbaz is performing his responsibilities assigned by the law as a CM, read the document.
He pleaded with the court to dismiss the petitions challenging the chief minister’s elections and impose fines on the petitioners.
The chief minister maintained that the former Punjab governor’s investigations into the CM’s elections were “illegal”. The Punjab Assembly secretary had also no authority to conduct a probe in the election.