Pakistan

Imran Khan refuses to meet party 'defectors'

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Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Sunday reportedly refused to meet the PTI's defecting former members of the Punjab Assembly.

According to Express News, PTI workers are protesting in the Punjab constituencies of the defecting members. The former MPAs approached the party chief to rest their case but he refused to meet with them.

Moreover, during Chief Minister Pervaiz Elahi’s vote of confidence in the Punjab Assembly, PTI MPAs Faisal Cheema, Momina Waheed and Khurram Leghari were absent from the house.

The members were issued show-cause notices by the party and the PTI chief had instructed them to appear before the party Secretary General Asad Umar and present an explanation.

It may be noted that last year, 25 MPAs of the PTI were de-seated by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for defying party directives and voting for Hamza Shehbaz for the post of the Punjab Chief Minister.

Read: LHC issues notice to Hamza, others on petitions challenging his position as CM

The reference against the dissident lawmakers sent by then Punjab Assembly Speaker Pervaiz Elahi was accepted by the ECP for violating Article 63-A which pertains to defections.

The dissident lawmakers had included Raja Sagheer Ahmed, Malik Ghulam Rasool Sangha, Saeed Akbar Khan, Mohammad Ajmal, Abdul Aleem Khan, Nazir Ahmed Chohan, Mohammad Amin Zulqernain, Malik Nauman Langrial, Mohammad Salman, Zawar Hussain Warraich, Nazir Ahmed Khan, Fida Hussain, Zahra Batool, Mohammad Tahir, Aisha Nawaz, Sajida Yousaf, Haroon Imran Gill, Uzma Kardar, Malik Asad Ali, Ijaz Masih, Mohammad Sabtain Raza, Mohsin Atta Khan Khosa, Mian Khalid Mehmood, Mehar Mohammad Aslam and Faisal Hayat.

In its judgment, the ECP had said it had two options — to ignore the completion of actus reus (voting in favour of the opposite candidate) on the grounds of non-fulfillment of prerequisites as mentioned in Article 63-A and decline the declarations or hold that voting against party policies was a "serious matter" as observed by the Supreme Court.

The electoral watchdog had therefore declared that the PTI members were guilty of defection and defeated them.

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