ECP postpones Punjab Assembly elections till Oct 8

ECP postpones Punjab Assembly elections till Oct 8


ECP postpones Punjab Assembly elections till Oct 8

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Wednesday postponed Punjab Assembly elections until October 8 that were scheduled to be held on April 30.

A formal notification in this regard has also been issued by the electoral watchdog.

In the order, the ECP said that in exercise of the powers conferred upon it by Article 218(3) read with Section 58 and Section 8(c) of the Elections Act, 2017, the commission “hereby withdraws the election programme […] and fresh schedule will be issued in due course of time with poll date on October 8”.

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In March, a five-member of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) led by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, had ruled that elections for the provincial assemblies in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa must be held within 90 days.

“Parliamentary democracy is one of the salient features of the constitution. There can be no parliamentary democracy without parliament or the provincial assemblies … Elections, and the periodic holding of elections, therefore, underpin the very fabric of the constitution,” the court said in its order.

The assemblies in the two provinces were controlled by former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party. In January, Khan, in a bid to force early elections, asked the provincial governors to dissolve the two assemblies.

On February 21, President Arif Alvi, who is from the PTI, unilaterally announced April 9 as the election date in the two provinces, creating a constitutional crisis, with experts wondering if he had the right to do so.

In a decision under Section 57 (1) of Elections Act 2017, the president asked the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to issue the election programme in accordance with Section 57 (2) of the Act.

In his letter to the chief election commissioner, the president said he was under oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan under Article 42 read with third Schedule of the Constitution. He wrote that there being no restraining order from any of the judicial fora, there was no impediment to invoking the power and authority vested in him under Section 57 (1) of Elections Act 2017, empowering him to “announce the date or dates of the general elections after consultation with the Commission”.Sexton out of Italy match, Ryan replaces him as Irish captain

Earlier, the Lahore High Court (LHC) ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold elections in the province in 90 days. Justice Jawad Hassan pronounced the reserved verdict on plea filed by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), seeking orders for the Punjab governor to immediately announce a date for an election in the province.

Justice Jawad Hassan accepted the PTI's petition and asked the electoral body to stage the polls within the constitutional limit. The court remarked that the ECP was bound to conduct the election in 90 days after dissolution of assembly.

The court also instructed the ECP to promptly declare the date for the election of the provincial assembly with the notification that specifies the reasons behind the decision after consulting with the governor of Punjab, who is the province’s constitutional head.


In connection with the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) ruling, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Isnaf (PTI) senior leader Fawad Chaudhry said the rule of law was not existing in the country at all.

Taking to Twitter, the former federal minister said, “The country is having no constitution”.

 Meanwhile, PTI leader Hammad Azhar also expressed his reservations over the ECP’s ruling, saying, "Once again, efforts have been made to derail the democracy and violate the constitution."