ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday ordered re-election in NA-154 Lodhran, partially restoring the Election Tribunal’s (ET) original verdict as the apex court also overturned the lifetime disqualification of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Siddique Baloch.
The SC on September 29 had suspended the ET’s verdict and halted by-elections in NA-154 Lodhran, which were scheduled for October 11.
The three-judge bench, headed by Justice Saqib Nisar had issued the verdict on the petition filed by PML-N leader Siddique Baloch in which he had challenged his disqualification for life.
He had also prayed for halting by-elections in the constituency.
The bench had also ordered reinstatement of Siddique Baloch’s National Assembly membership.
In a short order, the tribunal had declared the academic degree of Siddique Khan Baloch as fake and his election from the National Assembly constituency in the 2013 polls null and void and ordered a re-election.
Siddique Khan Baloch — an independent candidate — had won the National Assembly seat in the 2013 general elections and later joined the PML-N.
Baloch had been given a lifelong disqualification for violating articles 62, 63 by submitting a fake degree and on rigging charges.
Justice (retd) Zahid Mehmood had issued the verdict on the petition filed by the runner-up candidate Jehangir Tareen of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) who had challenged the whole election besides Baloch’s degree.
Speaking to the media today following the fresh decision of the apex court, Baloch said whatever decision his party makes, he will support it, whether it means that he will contest himself, or whether it means that he will be supporting another candidate from his party for the constituency.
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