ISLAMABAD:On Wednesday, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial emphasized that uniform elections could not be held across the country.
He further stated that the Supreme Court could not reverse its previous decision regarding the holding of polls for the Punjab Assembly on May 14.
This statement comes after top intelligence officials briefed the apex court on the security situation the day before. CJP Bandial mentioned that the director general of military operations presented the briefing to the bench, with the director general of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and defense secretary also in attendance.
CJP Bandial acknowledged the impressive briefing provided by military authorities regarding the actual security situation, but expressed disappointment that no briefing was provided during the case hearing. He emphasized that since the decision has been announced, there can be no going back and it is time to move forward.
During the hearing, the chief justice rejected the Ministry of Defence’s petition seeking elections across the country on the same day, terming it “unmaintainable”. The three-member bench, which includes Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan and Justice Munib Akhtar, is currently hearing the case.
Notably, this is the same bench that gave the April 4 ruling directing the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold elections in Punjab on May 14. On Tuesday, the Ministry of Defence requested the top court to withdraw its earlier ruling and hold elections across the country on the same date.
Additionally, two more pleas seeking elections across the country have been filed in the apex court. One of the pleas was filed by citizen Mohammad Arif, while the other was registered by Advocate Shah Khawar on Sardar Kashif Khan’s behalf. The court is currently hearing all the pleas together.