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Pak poll panel can hold govt in contempt for withholding funds: Ex-ECP secy tells minister

December 01, 2021 05:20 PM

Islamabad, No institution is authorised to withhold the funds for Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the Commission has power to reject electoral amendments, said former ECP secretary Kanwar Dilshad while lashing out at Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhary.

"The ECP is a constitutional institution and enjoys the same protocols and powers as the Supreme Court. As such, it will obtain the funds from the Ministry of Finance under Article 222 of the Constitution," he said while speaking on Geo News programme 'Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Sath' on Tuesday.

Earlier, Chaudhary said there was a likelihood of the government not being able to fund elections that would not include the use of electronic voting machines (EVMs), Dawn reported.

"And one of the points of view [shared in the meeting] was that the government could not fund any election held without [the use of] EVMs as after the recent amendment, the law [only] recognised polls involving the use of EVMs," he said.

According to Article 222 of the Constitution, the ECP is empowered to reject any amendments to the Election Laws 2017 even is they are passed by a joint session of Parliament and all provincial assemblies but are against the provisions of the constitution.

"No institution has the authority to decline funds to the Election Commission," Dilshad said.

"The Election Commission can file a case of contempt if its funds are withheld," he pointed out.

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