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Defection of MPAs: A politically strong but legally weak case of PTI | The...

There was no ambiguity in the mind of Ahmed Bilal Mehboob that the defection of the dissenting PTI MPAs, who voted for Hamza Shehbaz, was an open and shut case. But he, the founder of PILDAT further explained in a tweet, had to revisit his views after hearing the arguments of the lawyer representing the provincial lawmakers loyal to Jehangir Khan Tareen. What changed his mind was the point articulated by the lawyer that the PTI’s parliamentary leader in Punjab Assembly never issued a formal direction regarding who to vote for. Therefore, “I no longer consider it an open [and] shut case,” Mehboob tweeted. Reference against the dissenting MPAs was sent by Punjab Assembly Speaker and has been taken up by the Election Commission of Pakistan.

Key Words: Defection, Article 63-A, dissent MPAs

Federal govt sacks Punjab governor | The Express Tribune

The federal government issued a notification for the removal of Punjab Governor Omer Sarfraz Cheema as the constitutional period of sending the summary to the president to this effect ended, according to the notice of the Cabinet Division available with The Express Tribune on Tuesday. The notification came as President Arif Alvi “strongly rejected” Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s advice to remove Cheema, saying that under Clause 3 of Article 101 of the Constitution, “the Governor shall hold office during the pleasure of the President”.

Key Words: Governor Punjab, Federal Government

POLITICS OF RELIGION: DEADLY TUG-OF-WAR OVER THE RELIGION CARD | The Express Tribune

Allegations of blasphemy have rendered every place from Pakistan’s courts and universities to police stations, factories and worship places a potential ‘crime scene’. Given how sensitive and inherently emotive the issue is for a significant segment of the populace, the threat of death extends beyond prisons and the gallows for those accused or convicted. It waits for them in the streets and the open markets, often before a judicial process can even begin.

Key Words: Politics of religion, religion card, Madina incident

PTI MNAs being given salaries even after they quit| The Express Tribune

Even though the resignations of PTI MNAs including former premier Imran Khan have not been accepted yet, sources in the NA secretariat told The Express Tribune that the salaries of these members were sent to their accounts from March to April 10. They added that salaries and other benefits after April 10 would be decided after the confirmation of the resignations. Salaries after April 10 were not released until a final decision was made. The sources said PTI members were still in possession of parliament lodges.

Key Words: PTI MNAs resignations, Salaries, National Assembly

What goes around… | The News

It seems that for Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, recently ousted from federal government, the going is likely to get tougher in the coming months. The party’s top leadership is set for a bumpy ride in its pursuit of political glory in the next general elections. Imran Khan, the former premier, has weaponised its rhetoric against state institutions ranging from the judiciary to the armed forces on social media platforms. Many experts say, however, that the party is likely to see diminishing political dividends in the campaign over the coming weeks and months.

Key Words: PTI narrative, State institutions, accountability

Daunting challenges ahead for ‘rainbow coalition’ | The Express Tribune

Now that the government has finally cobbled up a heteroclite federal cabinet comprising members from its ‘rainbow coalition’, the terrain ahead for Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s government is thorny and rough. At a time when the air is thick with anticipations that the country stood just “inches away” from civil unrest, the question that now screams for answers is whether the coalition government will be able to juggle its priorities.

Key Words: PDM, Federal Cabinet

Analysis: How an unhelpful president can bother govt | The News

With President Arif Alvi seemingly opting out of his constitutional duties with the new government, there are questions as to what extent he can pose a challenge to the working of the Shehbaz Sharif-led coalition government. Barrister Salahuddin Ahmed says that: "The rules of business set out all the matters which are done on orders of the president -- on the advice of the PM. They also set out the ones which he does on his own (appointment of caretaker and dissolution of assemblies--on the advice of the PM). If the president starts refusing the advice of the PM, state machinery would quickly grind to a halt".

Key Words: President, Punjab Governor, CM Punjab

President directs Punjab governor to continue working | Aaj TV

President Dr Arif Ali on Monday directed Punjab Governor Omar Sarfraz Cheema to continue working in his office till a decision is taken on the summary of the latter’s removal by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. “Continue performing your duties as Governor Punjab until a decision is taken on the summary,” read the brief statement from the presidency.

Key Words: Governor Punjab, President

Punjab sans chief minister for last three weeks | Bol News

round 120 million people of the largest province of the country, Punjab, are without any regular chief minister since Sardar Usman Buzdar has resigned from the office on March 28. The Punjab governor had accepted the resignation of Sardar Usman Buzdar on April 1. Even after dilly-dallying by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) for the last couple of weeks, elections for the new chief executive of Punjab was held on April 16 but since then Hamza Shehbaz couldn’t take oath as the new chief minister after Punjab Governor Umar Cheema refused to administer him the oath, raising concerns on the election process.

Key Words: CM Punjab, Punjab Assembly

حمزہ شہباز: اگر گورنر پنجاب عمر سرفراز چیمہ نو منتخب وزیر اعلی سے حلف...

پاکستان کے صوبہ پنجاب کی اسمبلی میں سنیچر کو ایک غیر معمولی اجلاس ہوا جس میں اپوزیشن کے امیدوار حمزہ شہباز نئے وزیرِ اعلی منتخب ہوئے مگر وہ تاحال اپنے عہدے کا حلف نہیں اٹھا سکے جس سے ایک غیر یقینی کی صورتحال پیدا ہوئی ہے۔ سابق حکمراں جماعت پاکستان تحریکِ انصاف اور پاکستان مسلم لیگ ق کے اتحاد نے اس اجلاس کی کارروائی کا بائیکاٹ کیا مگر اس سے قبل کئی گھنٹوں تک ہنگامہ آرائی جاری رہی جس میں بعض ارکان ہاتھا پائی بھی کرتے دیکھے گئے۔ سابقہ حکومت کے اتحاد کی غیر موجودگی میں ڈپٹی سپیکر دوست محمد مزاری نے لاؤڈ سپیکر کی مدد سے سپیکر کی گیلری میں کھڑے ہو کر اجلاس کی کارروائی چلائی اور الیکشن کروایا۔ انھوں نے پاکستان مسلم لیگ ن کے رہنما کو کامیاب قرار دیا۔

Key Words: Governor Punjab, CM Punjab, Oath-taking of CM Punjab

Continue your duties, President tells Punjab Governor | Business Recorder

President Dr Arif Ali on Monday directed Governor Punjab Omar Sarfraz Cheema to continue in his office till a decision is taken on the summary of his removal by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. “Continue performing your duties as Governor Punjab until a decision is taken on the summary,” read the brief statement from the Presidency. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday sacked the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Governor in Punjab through a summary forwarded to the President to pave the way for the oath taking of his son Hamza Shehbaz as the chief minister Punjab, after Cheema expressed reservations on the process of his election.

Key Words: Governor Punjab, President

“Success of the no-trust motion has triggered new uncertainty” | The News on Sunday

The Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) is an independent think tank that focuses on political and public policy research and legislative strengthening. It aims to strengthen democracy and democratic institutions through its work. The PILDAT also carries out a periodic performance review of the parliament and provincial assemblies. The News on Sunday spoke to Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, the PILDAT president, on the recent parliamentary and political crises. Excerpts follow.

Key Words: Vote of No-confidence, Imran Khan, National Assembly

Explainer: Imran Khan demands immediate polls, but is it even possible? | Geo New

Shehbaz Sharif was elected the 23rd prime minister of Pakistan on Monday, after his rival Imran Khan was ousted in a no confidence vote, a year before he was due to complete his five-year term. On the day of Sharif’s election, Khan’s PTI resigned from the national assembly and promised to take to the streets to demand an immediate election. As of now, there is no opposition party in the Parliament. How will this affect the workings of the new government? Since the leader of the house and the leader of the opposition have to, in consultation, appoint members of the Election Commission, chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and a caretaker prime minister, amongst other important decisions.

Key Words: Imran Khan, early elections, PTI

En masse resignations: what’s next? | The Express Tribune

There has not been a single dull moment in the mercurial political climate of the country in the past few weeks. Just as the mood of politics seemed to be heading back on an even keel with the election of a new prime minister, bang came another twist. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), including former premier Imran Khan, announced they were quitting the National Assembly en masse. Just a few days ago, the country was looking for a caretaker setup but it has now ended up electing

Key Words: PTI resignations, National Assembly

Party tickets the main concern as election bells start ringing | The Express Tribune

With the no-confidence motion on the horizon for the second time in a week, the country will likely head towards an election sooner or later given the political uncertainty; now the country’s political parties have a formidable task on hand - who gets the ticket? The reinstated Prime Minister, owing to a Supreme Court decision, Imran Khan, recently announced that he would give tickets to ideological activists within the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) instead of opting for ‘electables’ in the upcoming elections. Lahore is of particular importance to all who have a stake in the election due to the city having 14 general seats in the National Assembly and 30 general seats in the Punjab Assembly. However, a challenge awaits those who get the PTI ticket from Lahore, as in the 2018 elections, 95 percent of the PTI ticket holders in the city, who won the national and provincial seats, had a margin of victory on average of 9,000 votes; whereas in contests where the PTI lost, the margin was more than 21,000 votes on average.

Key Words: Party tickets allocation, electable, PTI

What will be PM Imran’s next move? | The Express Tribune

Prime Minister Imran Khan is widely known for two things: he is unpredictable and he knows how to get attention. For instance, right when the opposition parties were celebrating the victory of democracy and Constitution after the country’s top court decision, he was mulling over resigning en masse from the National Assembly; a move discussed in detail but countered with the suggestion of doing what he did best: sit on the opposition benches instead of giving a walkover to the other side. Despite the judicial setback on Thursday night, many believe that the prime minister can still mount a political comeback through public support provided how he deals with the Supreme Court’s decision nullifying his unconstitutional moves. The confirmation that he will continue to fight till the last ball came from his Twitter account soon after the court decision. The question, however, was if he still is the phenomenon that once was before the top court decision and if the nation would witness more criticism on the establishment for staying “neutral” amid political turmoil in the coming days.

Key Words: Imran Khan, PTI resignations, Supreme Court

Aftermath of Supreme Court’s ruling on no-trust move | The Express Tribune

A five-member bench of the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial on Thursday passed a unanimous verdict, declaring the rejection of a no-trust against Prime Minister Imran Khan by the National Assembly deputy speaker as "unconstitutional".

Key Words: Supreme Court, Vote of No-confidence, Deputy Speaker ruling

Pakistan top court delays ruling on political crisis | Aljazeera

Pakistan’s Supreme Court has adjourned without ruling on the legality of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s move to dissolve parliament and call new elections. A five-judge bench of Pakistan’s top court is hearing multiple petitions challenging Khan’s dissolution of parliament, which set the stage for national elections. During Tuesday’s proceedings, the court said it still has to hear more arguments on the crisis and that the hearings would continue on Wednesday. Parliament’s Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri dissolved the assembly on Sunday ahead of planned a no-confidence vote that Khan appeared set to lose, saying the motion was part of a foreign conspiracy. The opposition says the move was unconstitutional.

Key Words: Supreme Court, Vote of No-confidence, National Assembly

تحریک عدم اعتماد: کیا آئینی خلا عمران خان کو بچا سکتا ہے؟

پاکستان میں تحریک عدم اعتماد کے ذریعے موجودہ وزیراعظم کو آئینی طریقے سے ہٹا کر نئے وزیراعظم کے انتخاب کی باتیں زبان زد عام ہیں لیکن اسی آئینی طریقے میں نئے وزیراعظم کے انتخاب کی کوئی مدت طے نہیں کی گئی ہے، جسے آئین میں ایک خلا اور موجودہ وزیراعظم کے زیادہ عرصے تک عہدے پر رہنے کا راستہ بھی کہا جا رہا ہے۔ پاکستان میں انتخابات و پارلیمانی امور کے تجزیہ کار اور ادارے پلڈاٹ کے سربراہ احمد بلال محبوب نے انڈپینڈنٹ اردو کو بتایا کہ ’قومی اسمبلی میں تحریک عدم اعتماد کی قرارداد پیش ہونے کے بعد وزیراعظم کا انتخاب کرنے کے لیے سب سے پہلے کاغذات نامزدگی چھاپے جائیں گے۔ ان کی سکروٹنی (جانچ پڑتال) ہوگی اور اس دوران امیدواروں کی فہرست بھی سامنے آجائے گی، جس کے بعد ووٹنگ کے ذریعے 172 ووٹوں سے امیدواروں کا چناؤ ہوگا۔‘

Key Words: Vote of No-confidence, Imran Khan, defection

Pakistani Prime Minister Facing No-Confidence Vote | VoA

Ahead of a serious challenge brewing in Pakistan's lower house, the National Assembly, embattled Prime Minister Imran Khan, a former cricket celebrity, has distanced his country from the United States and strained a fragile domestic political culture with verbal salvos against political rivals. The opposition, made up of former adversaries, claims to have enough votes to overthrow Khan's government through a vote of no confidence. Over a dozen elected members of his own Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party have officially backed the opposition's motion of no confidence, citing the government's failure to manage inflation and to govern properly. Some ruling coalition partners have joined forces with the opposition, while others have condemned what they call Khan's revenge politics.

Key Words: Vote of No-confidence, Imran Khan, defection

Are MNAs awaiting ‘phone calls’ to pick sides? | The Express Tribune

Ever since the opposition filed requisition for a no-trust motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan in the lower house of parliament, it seems the decision to pick sides by the estranged members of the ruling PTI and its allies will be made once they finally start receiving “phones calls” from the “powerful circles”. Lawmakers, both from the treasury and opposition benches, have candidly admitted that they had received phone calls from the “powerful circles” in the past. They also revealed that the time to receive phone calls has yet to come as they are usually made on that particular day or just a day or two before that.

Key Words: PTI alliance, Vote of No-confidence, National Assembly

Loyalists desert, Pakistan PM Imran Khan faces most serious challenge to his rule |...

Pakistan's Prime Minister is facing the most serious challenge to his rule as senior party leaders desert him amid a renewed opposition push to box him in with street protests and demands he faces a no-confidence vote.  A senior member of Khan's government, Aleem Khan, joined a breakaway group of the ruling Tehreek-e-Insaf on Monday citing disappointment with the premier's governance since he came to power in August 2018. Over the weekend, the prime minister's former special assistant Nadeem Afzal Chan also defected to the opposition Pakistan Peoples Party. 

Key Words: Vote of No-confidence, dissent MPs, PTI

Govt can’t de-seat lawmakers ahead of voting on no-trust motion: Ahmed Bilal | Geo...

Legal expert Ahmed Bilal Mehboob Thursday said that neither the government nor the National Assembly (NA) speaker have the powers to de-seat or bar the lawmakers from casting votes in favour of the no-trust move. He was responding to the reports that the PTI is planning to bar or disqualify some of its disgruntled lawmakers ahead of voting on the no-confidence motion to thwart the Opposition’s move.

Key Words: Vote of No-confidence, defection, PTI

PM Khan’s only option is to defeat no-trust motion by proving majority — experts...

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday described a no-confidence motion against him as “the political death of opposition” in a fiery speech which he delivered after meeting his coalition partners based in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province. The prime minister flew to Karachi to interact with the top leaders of Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) and Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) after the opposition filed a no-trust motion in the National Assembly against him that can lead to the fall of his government.

Key Words: PM Imran, No-trust motion, vote of No-confidence

Revving up the growth engine

The much-hyped efforts of the opposition parties to topple the government received a severe blow after Prime Minister Imran Khan announced a reduction in the prices of petroleum products and electricity tariff to curb the inflation. Experts believed that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s timely decision to reduce the prices of the utilities would take the bite out of the opposition anti-government drive. Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (Pildat) President Ahmed Bilal Mehboob said that the short-term measure will dent the efforts of the opposition parties.

Key Words: Relief package, Imran Khan, PTI

Vibrant ‘LG System’ to help resolve masses problems at their doorsteps

Efficient public service delivery is not possible without following the evolved mechanism given in the Constitution for empowerment of the elected ‘Local Government’ representatives to serve public and resolve their issues at the grassroots.’ Most of the nations have evolved respective systems to reach out to public and to serve them at their doorsteps to improve their living standards through the elected local body representatives. Therefore, de-centralization becomes a key for not only efficient service delivery but also paving way for real democracy by nurturing grassroots political activity.

Key Words: LG, Article 140-A, Local bodies

Guest Editorial: Chasing good governance | Daily Times

he outburst of criticism both from the Opposition and some cabinet ministers on the recently-announced results of a performance review of 41 ministries has, arguably, once again demonstrated that investing effort and money in large visible projects such as motorways and intra-city transport systems is much safer and politically more beneficial than undertaking long-term governance reforms. It was a bold step on part of Prime Minister Imran Khan to opt for systemic reforms in the government and undertake performance review. He, in fact, went a step further and, despite advice to the contrary, publicly announced the results of the performance assessment.

Key Words: Governance, Ministries performance agreement, PTI

Political expediency brings adversaries to Lahore

Over the last few days, the top leadership of the PPP converged in Lahore to meet and discuss with the PML-N the possibility of closer cooperation among the opposition parties in parliament for ousting the ‘Kaptaan’ through a no-confidence motion. This was followed by a visit of the leaders of the MQM-Pakistan (MQM-P), a Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) coalition ally, which spawned speculation about the future of the existing setup and added to the prevailing political uncertainty.

Key Words: PTI alliance, MQMP, PML

‘PM can’t arbitrarily decide who is criminal’

In a lengthy and fiery telephonic question and answer session with the general public live on air during a programme called “Aap Ka Wazir-e-Azam, Aap Kay Saath”, the prime minister blasted the Sharif family over corruption cases and revealed that he refuses to shake hands with Shehbaz on the pretext that it would normalise corruption as the latter was facing corruption cases worth billions of rupees.

Key Words: Imran Khan, Shehbaz Sharif, PTI

Politics in Utopia

Politics is generally considered a dirty game, laced with treachery and conspiracies all over the world but the scorn is extremely pronounced in Pakistan. There are many reasons behind such negative connotations being attached to the word. First comes the activities of politicians, which is followed by a lack of awareness about political science–a discipline taught in many universities of Pakistan. Lastly, in some cases, the youth is deterred to discern and from taking part in politics due to an egregious picture before them.

Key Words: Politics in Pakistan, Democracy

فارن فنڈنگ رپورٹ۔۔تحریک ا نصاف کیخلاف کیا کچھ ہو سکتا ہے۔۔ماہرین نے بتادیا

الیکشن کمیشن کے سابق سیکرٹری کنور دلشاد کا کہنا ہے کہ سکروٹنی کمیٹی کی طرف سے پاکستان تحریک انصاف کے بینک اکاؤنٹ اور غیر ملکی فنڈنگ کے بارے میں جو رپورٹ پیش کی ہے اس کے بعد اب الیکشن کمیشن اس پر جوڈیشل کارروائی شروع کرے گا۔بی بی سی سے بات کرتے ہوئے انہوں نے کہا کہ الیکشن ایکٹ 2017 کا سیکشن 204 اس حوالے سے بڑا واضح ہے کہ کوئی بھی غیر ملکی ادارہ، تنظیم یا شخصیت پاکستان میں کسی سیاسی جماعت کو فنڈ فراہم نہیں کر سکتی۔انہوں نے کہا کہ سکروٹنی کمیٹی کی اس رپورٹ میں ان غیر ملکی اداروں اور ان شخصیات کی بھی نشاندہی کی گئی ہے جنہوں نے پاکستان تحریک انصاف کو فنڈ فراہم کئے۔کنور دلشاد کا کہنا تھا کہ پاکستان تحریک انصاف کی غیر ملکی فنڈنگ کا معاملہ 2014 میں سامنے آیا تھا اور الیکشن کمیشن کے حکام کی طرف سے اس معاملے کو منطقی انجام تک پہنچانے میں تاخیر کی گئی۔ انہوں نے کہا کہ خود پاکستان تحریک انصاف کے عہدیداروں نے بھی الیکشن کمیشن کی کارروائی کو رکوانے کے لئے مختلف ہائی کورٹس سے حکم امتناع بھی حاصل کئے۔

Key Words: Foreign funding case, PTI, ECP

فارن فنڈنگ کیس:سکروٹنی کمیٹی کی رپورٹ حکمران جماعت کے لیے کیا مشکلات پیدا کر...

وزیر اعظم پاکستان عمران خان نے الیکشن کمیشن کی جانب سے سمندر پار پاکستانیوں کے عطیات پر مشتمل حکمراں جماعت تحریک انصاف کی فنڈنگ کی پڑتال کا خیر مقدم کرتے ہوئے کہا ہے کہ وہ ’دیگر دو بڑی جماعتوں ن لیگ اور پی پی کے مالیات کی اسی قسم کی پڑتال کے منتظر‘ ہیں۔

Key Words: Foreign Funding, PTI, ECP

Pakistan Senate election kicks off as Imran Khan’s ruling party looks for majority |...

The following mention appeared in Arab News on March 03, 2021 at the following link https://www.arabnews.com/node/1818976/amp The ruling party of Prime Minister Imran Khan and his political allies will seek to wrest control of Pakistan’s Senate...

Body formed to review legal aspects of TLP’s plea | The Express Tribune

The following mention appeared in The Express Tribune on April 30, 2021 at the following link https://tribune.com.pk/story/2297650/body-formed-to-review-legal-aspects-of-tlps-plea Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid on Friday formed a three-member committee to examine the legal aspects of an application filed...

Imran Khan government in Pakistan at risk after shock setback

The following mention appeared on Live Mint website on March 04, 2021 at the following link https://www.livemint.com/politics/news/imran-khan-government-in-pakistan-at-risk-after-shock-setback-11614846228663.html Khan faced a surprise loss in the country’s Senate after Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Shaikh lost a tightly fought...

Pakistan Senate election kicks off as Imran Khan’s ruling party looks for majority

The following mention appeared on Arab News website on March 03, 2021 at the following link https://www.arabnews.com/node/1818976/world ISLAMABAD/KARACHI: The ruling party of Prime Minister Imran Khan and his political allies will seek to wrest control of...

Senate election 2021: Experts support ECP’s decision on secret ballot

The following mention appeared on Geo News website on March 03, 2021 at the following link https://www.geo.tv/latest/337819-senate-election-2021-experts-support-ecps-decision-on-secret-ballot Legal and political experts have strongly supported the decision of the Election Commission of Pakistan to hold this year’s...

Is a five-year term too short for a govt?

The following mention appeared on Express Tribune website on February 01, 2021 at the following link https://tribune.com.pk/story/2282191/is-a-five-year-term-too-short-for-a-govt In the last two decades, Israel has witnessed eight elections. The Jewish state’s national legislature – the Knesset –...

Is a forward bloc in making in Punjab?

The following mention appeared on Global Village Space website on January 28, 2021 at the following link https://www.globalvillagespace.com/is-a-forward-bloc-in-making-in-punjab/ As the Senate elections are approaching, a group of provincial lawmakers in Punjab have once again decided to...

Transparency International report sparks debate over corruption in Pakistan

The following mention appeared on Arab News website on January 25, 2021 at the following link https://www.arabnews.pk/node/1618006/pakistan ISLAMABAD: A recent Transparency International report that places Pakistan on 120th number on the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) has...