February 17, 2024


Mr. Riazat Ali Sahar, Vice Chairman and Mr. Farooq Hamid Naek, Chairman Executive Commmittee, Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) along with Mr. Muhammad Ahsan Bhoon, Hafeez-ur-Rehman Chaudhry, Pir Muhammad Masood Chishti, Mr. Haroon-ur-Rashid, Mr. Hassan Raza Pasha, Mr. Tahir Nasrullah Warraich, Mr. Mirza Aziz Akbar Baig, Syed Amjad Shah, Mr. Khush Dil Khan, (Members PBC) are deeply troubled by the ongoing political turmoil in the country, particularly concerning allegations of pre and post-poll rigging. They said that the integrity and transparency of the electoral process, along with the its outcomes, have lost credibility.

They call upon all political parties and stakeholders aggrieved by the electoral process and allegations of rigging to work towards establishing an independent commission, acceptable to all political parties. Such a commission, free from bias and influence, is crucial to ensuring a fair and transparent electoral process that commands the trust of all citizens.
They said that recent allegations and disclosures by the Commissioner Rawalpindi have added to the concerns surrounding the electoral process. The PBC underscores the urgent need for a thorough investigation into these allegations.

Furthermore, they reiterated their previous concerns expressed before the election, regarding the performance and credibility of the Chief Election Commissioner of Pakistan. Regrettably, these concerns were disregarded, by the political parties, which resulted contributing to the current political turmoil. Addressing such concerns in a timely manner (including resignation of chairman ECP) could have averted the present crisis, they said. The PBC also condemns the coercion faced by independent candidates to align with specific political parties against their will. Every independent candidate must have the freedom to choose their affiliation without undue pressure or interference.

In the end, the PBC urges all stakeholders to prioritize the restoration of trust in the electoral process and commit to upholding democratic principles for the stability and progress of Pakistan. They also condemned the arrest of Mr. Fawad Ch. ASC and Salman Akram Raja ASC. They regretted that when the Chief Election Commissioner has played havoc with the whole election process, then demand of Justice from the same institution by the Supreme Court Bar Association of Pakistan through press statement seems to be a mockery of Justice.