Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), expressed dissatisfaction on Saturday with the Supreme Court’s ruling against the Lahore High Court’s order on the appointment of election officers for the upcoming elections on February 8, 2024.
Speaking to the media in Islamabad after meeting with imprisoned ex-PTI chief Imran Khan, Barrister Gohar reiterated his party’s stance that returning officers (ROs) and district returning officers (DROs) should come from the judiciary. Despite this, he emphasized that the PTI’s demand is to ensure that elections proceed as scheduled without any delay and that they are conducted in a free and fair manner.
Barrister Gohar stated that the PTI is committed to preventing any derailment of democracy and insisted that the party is not advocating for a boycott of the elections. He highlighted that the party’s goal is to present its concerns to the court and called on the Supreme Court to listen to their grievances without issuing contempt of court notices.
The ECP had stopped the training of ROs and DROs on December 14 following the LHC ruling that suspended the appointment of officers from the bureaucracy. Barrister Gohar emphasized the PTI’s right to express reservations before the court and urged the Supreme Court to ensure a level playing field, reiterating their commitment to free and fair elections.
After much deliberation, the Supreme Court suspended the LHC’s order, stating that the LHC bench exceeded its jurisdiction. Chief Justice of Pakistan Qazi Faez Isa also issued a contempt of court notice to the PTI lawyer, seeking an explanation for violating the apex court’s order.