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Wednesday, 7 March 2012

ECP slaps disqualification on Waheeda

Wasif Chudhary

SLAMABAD: Announcing a landmark verdict on Wednesday, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) disqualified Pakistan People's Party's candidate Waheeda Shah for two years and declared her election on PS-53 Tando Muhammad Khan null and void.

The ECP had earlier reserved the judgment in the much talked-about case till Wednesday.

Chief Election Commissioner Justice (retd) Hamid Ali Mirza chaired the proceedings while Election Commission Members Justice (retd) Riaz Kayani (Punjab), Justice (retd) Fazlur Rehman, Shahzad Akbar Khan (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) and Roshan Ali Essani were also part of the event.

Waheeda Shah had slapped a Presiding Officer Habiba Memon and Assistant Presiding Officer Shagufta Memon in a polling station of PS-53 Tando Muhammad Khan during by elections of last month in the presence of a DSP.

The video footage of the incident that was repeatedly played by news channels shocked the entire nation.

The issue was taken up by the ECP which announced its historic verdict today that is being hailed by all segments of the society including politicians, the civil society and human rights activists.

The Chief Justice of Pakistan also took suo motto notice of it and Waheeda Shah apologized for the shameful treatment she meted out to the officers of ECP. The case is still underway and it is yet to be seen what action the Supreme Court takes against her.

On Tuesday, Waheeda Shah did not turn up at the Election Commission Secretariat in spite of a summon served on her by the ECP. Her lawyer said his client's reaction was the result of a misunderstanding.

Ifran Shah, the DSP in whose presence Waheeda Shah slapped the polling officers in Tando Muhammad Khan was also suspended by the IG Sindh on Tuesday.

He was taken to task for taking no action and standing as a silent spectator as the incident unfolded in front of him.

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