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‘There’s no law to punish people over invalid votes’

Former ECP official says 'corrupt practice' needs to be established

SAMAA | - Posted: Mar 3, 2021 | Last Updated: 9 months ago
Posted: Mar 3, 2021 | Last Updated: 9 months ago

The Election Commission of Pakistan could take action over Ali Haider Gillani’s video if it involved any “mala fide” and “corrupt” practice, a former ECP official said Tuesday.

Kanwar Dilshad, the former ECP secretary, told SAMAA TV that the election commission would issue notices to Gillani, the government and the MNA seen in the video after filing of a reference.

But he said the Election Act, 2017 has no clause that proposes punishment for a candidate or lawmaker for polling an “invalid” vote.

A video of former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gillani’s son went viral Tuesday evening in which he was seen advising a PTI MNA on how to waste his vote in the Senate election. Later, Ali Haider confirmed it was him in the video.

“We have requested many of our old and new friends, who belong to the ruling party, for their votes,” Ali Haider said at a press conference. “As far as this video is concerned, I can state this on good authority that these MNAs belong to the PTI, they are my friends.”

He claimed the MNAs told him they didn’t want to vote for PTI’s candidate Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and asked what they should do if the PTI gave them printed ballots.

Ali Haider said he told them how to have their votes rejected if their party gave them marked ballots.

The PTI has decided to file a reference against ex-PM Gillani, seeking his disqualification as the candidate for the Senate seat from Islamabad.

Gillani should be disqualified for the Senate election, Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry told reporters in Islamabad Tuesday night.

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