Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Thursday said his party did not care whether a five-member bench or a full court of the Supreme Court heard a case on delaying polls in Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, adding that if only wanted to know if elections will be held within 90 days.
“Whether it’s a 5-member SC bench or full bench, it makes no difference to us because all we want to know is if elections will be held within the 90 days’ constitutional provision,” he wrote on Twitter. “Before we dissolved our two provincial assemblies [in Punjab and KP], I consulted our top constitutional lawyers, all of whom were absolutely clear that the 90-day constitutional provision on holding of elections was inviolable,” he said, alleging that the “imported government” had “compromised” the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and were “making a complete mockery” of the Constitution.
“By cherry picking which Articles of Constitution they will abide by they are threatening the very foundation of Pakistan, which is the Constitution and Rule of Law,” he said. “So petrified are they of elections and so desperate to whitewash their convicted leaders that they are prepared to destroy the Constitution and any semblance of Rule of Law,” he added.
The PTI chief’s remarks came as the Supreme Court bench hearing the case was dissolved after Justice Aminud Din Khan recused himself. The bench was reconstituted with the remaining four members comprising Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial and Justices Ijazul Ahsan, Jamal Khan Mandokhail, and Munib Akhtar. However, on Friday morning, Justice Mandokhail also recused himself from the case, leaving just a three-member bench to continue hearings.
Responding to Khan’s tweets, Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) chief organizer Maryam Nawaz described as a “hideous joke” Khan invoking the Constitution despite being a “certified anti-constitutionalist.” Claiming that Khan’s “plot” had been exposed, she claimed that no one in Pakistan would now follow his orders and he should just “keep silent.”