PCC files petition in IHC for Elections in Local Government elections in Punjab
Islamabad: October 10, 2013. Pakistan Christian Congress PCC has filed a Writ Petition Number 3538/13 in Islamabad High Court to challenge Local Government Act 2013 of Punjab government which proposed Selection of Christian Councilors instead of Elections.
Mr. Akram Waqar Gill, Chief Organizer of Punjab Pakistan Christian Congress PCC is petitioner while Malik Mohammad Ali Advocate is pleading case of PCC in Islamabad High Court.
The Local Government Act 2013 Punjab province abolished Election of Christian Councilors on reserved seats and imposed Selection or Indirect Elections in forthcoming local body elections of Union Councils, Town Councils, Municipal Corporations and Metropolitan Corporations.
The Christian voters were electing their councilors with their votes since 1985 which are denied in Local Government Act 2013 and Muslim councilors are empowered to Select Christian Councilors in local government elections in Punjab province of Pakistan.
The Local Government Act 2013 also denies any representation of Christians where they do not have 200 votes in any constituency which will decrease more than 1000 council seats in Union Councils and Town Committees.
Pakistani Christians were denied elections in National Assembly of Pakistan and Provincial Assemblies with an ordinance of Dictator General Pervez Musharraf in 2000 and Muslim parties in parliament were given power to Select Christians in parliament according their seats.
In 18th Amendment, the elected parliament in 2010 provided constitutional protection to Selection system for religious minorities on their reserved seats in parliament.
Pakistan Christian Congress PCC has always demanded Elections on reserved seats for minorities in democratic institution instead of Selection system as it Selection system negates Article 226 of Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan which says that every Member of Parliament must be elected through secret ballot.
Dr. Nazir S Bhatti, President of Pakistan Christian Congress PCC has congratulated PCC-Punjab leaders to challenge Local Government 2013 in Islamabad High Court that one man one vote principal of democracy may be enjoyed by Christians in Pakistan.
The hearing of PCC petition in Islamabad High Court will be on October 11, 2013 and if it is accepted for hearing then it will pave way for Christians to secure their due voting rights in Pakistan.