ISLAMABAD, (SANA):The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Monday decided to start printing of new nomination papers without getting the formal consent of President Asif Ali Zardari due to lack of time.
According to a statement issued by the Election commission of Pakistan here on Monday, it was said that new nomination papers were sent to President Asif ali Zardari for approval and the President was asked to sign the new nomination papers up to March 11, but no reply received from the President and the new nomination papers have been sent for printing without the approval of President Asif ali Zardari.
“President Asif Ali Zardari’s sign on new nomination papers is merely a formality. We have no more time to wait for the president’s sign,” a spokesman of the ECP said.
“It is responsibility of the Election Commission, not the government, to conduct free and fair elections,” he added.
The spokesman maintained that nominations for the elections would be called in through new forms.
Meanwhile, a member of the commission Justice (retd) Riaz Kayani said that Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has decided to order printing of the new nomination papers proposed by it.
According to the ECP member, the proposed draft was sent to the president only to fulfill the formality; however, he added there is no need to wait for the president’s approval.
Riaz Kayani said that only those nomination forms would be printed to which the ECP had granted approval.
Meanwhile, legal experts are of the view that the ECP has a right to order the president or any government official to get any work done and it also reserved a right to take action if the orders were not implemented.
Justice (retd) Wajihuddin Ahmed said that the ECP could direct or order any official to help the commission in holding free and fair elections.
He further said that if the orders of the commission were refused then it could also take action against the official.
The legal experts further said the commission could move Supreme Court for holding independent and transparent elections.
Earlier, Secretary Election Commission of Pakistan Ishtiaq Ahmed Khan informed that if President Asif Ali Zardari did not approve the reviewed nomination papers , then the printing of old nomination papers would be started from Tuesday.
While briefing the National Assembly standing committees on law and justice and the parliamentary affairs here on Monday, Ishtiaq Ahmed Khan said that security plan would be prepared in every district for the upcoming general elections in the country.
Secretary Election Commission said that any change in nomination papers by Law Ministry would be unacceptable.
The secretary Election Commission said that proposed draft of nomination papers was with President Asif Ali Zardari and he would be bond to sign the amended draft as a head of the state.
Ishtiaq Ahmed Khan said that printing work of new nomination papers would be kicked off immediately. He said that candidates would have to submit new nomination papers for participating in the upcoming polls.