KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) Monday ruled all amendments made to the Local Government Ordinance unconstitutional and has ordered that they be withdrawn, DawnNews reported.
A divisional bench of the SHC, headed by Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, declared the local government act as unconstitutional.
The court ruled on the matter after concluding its hearing of the final arguments on Tuesday over 10 applications, including one filed by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).
The SHC had received the applications from MQM, Pakistan Muslim League - Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Muslim League - Functional (PML-F) and others against the amendments made in the Local Government Act and also against the delimitation of constituencies for the local elections in the districts Karachi, Benazirabad, Nowshero Feroz and others.
The SHC had on Tuesday reserved its ruling after hearing arguments of the parties.
Moreover, on the subject of delimitation of constituencies, the court said the ruling party had continued with the process and that was unconstitutional.
Subsequently, the court condemned the existing delimitation of the constituencies and ordered that the process be started from scratch.
Advocate General Sindh and the lawyers of the Election Commission informed the court that due to shortage of time, the local body elections would be carried out on the voter lists of 2013.
Following which the court adjourned the case until Tuesday, Jan 31.
On Dec 4, the MQM had contested the delimitation in the SHC.
The PPP said after the SHC’s decision the upcoming local body elections on Jan 18, seem impracticable.
Also, the court said if the Sindh government considered the new delimitation of constituencies applicable, then the date of local government elections should be moved forward and for that purpose it should contact the Supreme Court and the ECP.
MQM's Faisal Sabzwari welcomes decision
The Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Faisal Sabzwari, belonging to the MQM, congratulated the general public on the decision of the SHC and expressed hope to also receive quick justice from the Supreme Court.
Following a parliamentary party meeting of the MQM in the Sindh Assembly, Sabzwari held a press conference in which he said that the SHC issued its ruling on the controversial decision and added that legislation should be enacted that was acceptable by everyone.
Sabzwari further said the legislation should not be such which is imposed upon people, adding that MQM had adopted the legal route and hoped that the apex court would also provide them speedy justice.
Moreover, the MQM leader stated that Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) should make laws for the welfare of the people. He added that it was necessary to abide by the court’s decision.
Sabzwari said that he wanted the election process to continue and any debate about justice should be done in the parliaments.
Separately, the opposition leader said that MQM’s preparations for local government elections were complete.