PTI Senator Azam Swati addresses a press conference in Islamabad. — APP/File
PTI Senator Azam Swati addresses a press conference in Islamabad. — APP/File
  • ECP rejects PTI leaders Murad Saeed, Azam Swati’s nominations.
  • Verdict on Swati’s appeal for technocract seat to be given later.
  • Swati “deliberately” hide details of cases in nominations: lawyer.

PESHAWAR: An appellate tribunal has overturned the rejection of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) stalwart Azam Swati’s nomination papers for forthcoming Senate election — scheduled for April 2.

The appellate tribunal — set up by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for listening to the poll-related complaints — heard Swati’s petition against rejection of his nomination papers on Senate’s general and technocrat seats ahead of the poll.

However, the tribunal would announce its verdict after deliberations on the politician’s appeal for his nomination for technocrat seat.

The hearing was conducted by tribunal’s judge Justice Shakeel Ahmad in which lawyers from both sides appeared. The judge questioned on which grounds, the nominations were rejected.

Swati’s lawyer apprised Justice Ahmad that there were a total of three persons filed objections against his client’s nomination, of which two complaints were not candidates in the forthcoming election.

Swati provided details of cases against him in nominations for Senate poll, which were not provided during general elections, the counsel said while detailing genre of objections before the tribunal.

The counsel continued that his client was himself unaware of complete details of cases against him which were provided over orders of the high court.

Subsequently, another complainant raised objection that Swati was “ineligible” for contesting poll on Upper House’s technocrat seat, as he is “inexperienced”. The counsel added that his client spent 18 years as senator, including two terms on technocrat seat, and one term on general seat.

“If Swati was eligible for technocrat seat from 2006 to 2012, then why he is ineligible in 2024?,” the counsel argued.

The complainant’s lawyer argued that 16-year education and 20-year experience were required for senatorship on technocrat seat.

Justice Ahmad remarked that Swati had served as a senator, as well as member of different committees of the upper house of parliament, where he participated in legislation.

To this, the lawyer argued that an individual can be disqualified over misrepresentation of facts, and Swati did not mention his release on bail in two cases in his nomination papers.

The judge remarked that a person who misrepresents fact used to take benefit, whereas, Swati did not mention in his affidavit that he was not facing any cases. However, the complainant’s counsel insisted that Swati did not mention cases deliberately in his nomination which was a deceitful move.

Later, the tribunal reserved its verdict after hearing arguments from both sides.

The election commission’s tribunal approved the firebrand PTI leader’s nomination papers for general seat. The tribunal would decide on his appeal against rejection of his nomination for technocrat seat in next hearing.

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