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LHC orders ECP to hold elections in 90 days in province

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LHC orders ECP to hold elections in 90 days in province

Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold elections in the province in 90 days.

The LHC Justice Jawad Hassan pronpunced the reserved verdict on plea filed by seeking orders for the Punjab governor to immediately announce a date for an election in the province. 

On Jan 27, the PTI had approached the LHC, seeking it order the Punjab governor to immediately announce a date of an election in the province since the assembly had been dissolved. The ECP had recommended the elections be held between April 9 and 17.

The petition, filed through PTI General Secretary Asad Umar, stated that more than 10 days had passed since the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly the Punjab governor and the ECP to submit their replies to the court by Feb 10.

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At the outset of the hearing, the governor’s lawyer maintained that Mr Rehman was not liable to give a date for elections when an interim cabinet has been formed. He pleaded the court to return the pleas as inadmissible with a fine on the petitioner.

IGP Punjab Usman Anwar and chief secretary also attended the hearing and assured that they would implement the decision of the court.

PTI lawyer Barrister Ali Zafar said President Arif Alvi could give a date for election as the IGP and chief secretary had assured of performing their duties. He said the president could announce the date through a notification.

A day earlier, the governor also submitted his response in an identical petition filed by a citizen Munir Ahmed, stating: “It is emphatically denied that the answering respondent No 1 was in any manner obligated to appoint the date of elections when he has never dissolved the Assembly while acting on the so-called advice of the Chief Minister”.

He also rejected an impression that his move is creating any hurdles in the way of ECP to discharge its duties, calling the allegations “fallacious”.

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During Thursday’s hearing, Mr Chaudhry pleaded the court to decide the case tomorrow (Friday) as further delay would affect the 90-day period enshrined in the Constitution for holding the elections.

The ECP lawyer told the court the electoral body was facing various impediments in holding the elections, including funds. The federal government’s lawyer, however, requested the judge to form a larger bench to hear the case.

The PTI lawyer said the government and the ECP were not serious in holding elections timely. Asad Umar warned that a Constitutional crisis would emerge if a date for elections was not announced within three days.

On Jan 14, the Punjab Assembly was dissolved without a nod from the Punjab governor. As per the law, the assembly stands dissolved within 48 hours of advice made by the chief minister whether the summary is not approved by the governor.

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Anchorperson Imran Riaz released after court dismisses charges against him

Anchorperson Imran Riaz released after court dismisses charges against him

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Anchorperson Imran Riaz released after court dismisses charges against him

 YouTuber and anchorperson Imran Riaz has been released following a court order that discharged him from charges of interference in official duties.

Imran Riaz’s lawyer, Mian Ali Ashfaq, confirmed the news on his official X (formerly Twitter) account.

Media reports indicate that on May 29, Chief Justice of Islamabad High Court, Justice Aamer Farooq, allowed Imran Riaz to perform Hajj. However, despite the court’s permission, he was barred from travelling to Saudi Arabia for Hajj on June 3 and had to return home, stating his intent to seek court intervention again.

On June 12, the Islamabad High Court once more permitted Imran Riaz to proceed with Hajj. Yet, on the same day, he was arrested at Lahore Airport, clad in ihram, just as he was about to depart.

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A case under Section 406 for breach of trust was filed against him, but the Model Town Court in Lahore dismissed these charges on June 13. Nonetheless, he was rearrested in connection with another case.

This time, Imran Riaz was accused in a case registered at Sarwar Road Police Station in Lahore for allegedly interfering with official duties by forcibly driving his vehicle through an airport checkpoint, damaging a barrier.

However, on June 14, the Cantt Court in Lahore discharged Imran Riaz from the interference charges, leading to his release as per the court’s order.

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Health insurance for 5,000 journalists on cards: Tarar

Health insurance for 5,000 journalists on cards: Tarar

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Health insurance for 5,000 journalists on cards: Tarar

Federal Information Minister Atta Tarar announced that health insurance for 5,000 journalists will be ensured in the first phase.

While addressing the media at the press club, Tarar stated that the government is committed to the welfare of journalists. He underlined the need to work together to serve the country. He also asserted the government’s belief in freedom of expression while stopping misinformation.

Also read: PPP standing with journalists over defamation law: Hassan Murtaza

Tarar highlighted that everyone must play a part in ending fake. He mentioned that a long meeting with journalists will be held soon saying that his doors are always open for them.

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Furthermore, Atta Tarar said that the government will ensure a minimum wage of Rs 37,000

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Political parties must prioritise country’s progress: President Zardari

Political parties must prioritise country’s progress: President Zardari

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Political parties must prioritise country's progress: President Zardari

 President Asif Ali Zardari has emphasised that political parties must prioritise the country’s progress and prosperity by fulfilling their democratic and constitutional responsibility.

He was talking to Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi, who called on him in Islamabad on Friday.

The president said we must only think about Pakistan and put aside personal differences.

He stressed the need to take Pakistan forward and everyone has to play his role in this regard.

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Speaking on the occasion, the Interior Minister said any challenge can be tackled through the power of unity and solidarity.

Besides, matters of mutual interest and country’s overall situation were discussed in the meeting.

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