ISLAMABAD, JAN 8 (Newsdesk): The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Monday overturned a significant ruling by nullifying lifetime disqualification, reversing its previous decision to bar a politician from holding office for life after being disqualified.
The ruling stated that individuals disqualified under Article 62(1)(f) cannot be permanently barred from contesting elections, thereby overturning the precedent set in the Samiullah Baloch case.
A larger bench of seven members, led by CJP Qazi Faez Isa and including Justices Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, Yahya Afridi, Aminuddin Khan, Jamal Khan Mandokhail, Muhammad Ali Mazhar, and Musarrat Hilali, presided over the case’s hearings. The proceedings were broadcast live on the apex court’s website.
The legal complication arose due to amendments in the Elections Act 2017 by the parliament, which limited a politician’s disqualification period to five years instead of a lifetime, contradicting the Supreme Court’s earlier ruling that considered disqualification under Article 62(1)(f) as “permanent.”
The recent judgment effectively permits Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Nawaz Sharif and Istehkam-e-Pakistan Party (IPP) chief Jahangir Tareen, who were previously disqualified for life, to participate in future elections.
Chief Justice Isa emphasized the urgency of releasing the order promptly since the election schedule had already been issued while announcing the reserved verdict.