What's the legal standing of Senate's election-delay resolution?

SCBA Secretary Ali Imran Shah calls motion effort to create hopelessness among people regarding elections

By
Maryam Nawaz
Representational image. — Canva
Representational image. — Canva

As the Senate resolution on deferring general elections, set to be staged on February 8, received massive criticism after the legislature approved it with a majority, Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Secretary Ali Imran Shah has also spurned the move.

“I think that this resolution does not have a [legal] value because the quorum [in the Senate] wasn’t full,” he said while talking to reporters on Friday evening.

He said that the motion was an effort to create hopelessness among the people regarding the elections.

"The bar is 100% with the Supreme Court and chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) on the orders of staging polls on February 8," he added.

After multiple delays and obstacles in the way of the designation of a date for the national level elections in the country, the apex court had ordered the caretaker government to ensure the conduct of polls on February 8, following a consensus between President Arif Alvi and Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja on the matter.

The order came with the verdict on the pleas seeking timely conduct of polls, filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), SCBA, and other parties.

As the country moves into the electoral process, the Senate today adopted a non-binding resolution to put off the polls in the light of extreme weather and security conditions in the country.

The resolution moved by independent lawmaker, Senator Dilawar Khan got the approval in the presence of 14 senators, who were the only lawmakers present in the upper house of 100, while PTI Senator Gurdeep Singh and PPP Senator Behramand Tangi abstained from voting. Following the vote, the Senate chairman adjourned the session indefinitely.

Fears of delays are rife as some political actors have been raising concerns about the security situation as well as the weather conditions. They say that they don't want a delay, but called for the redressal of their problems.