Presidential reference was not a question of law – Hashmat Habib

Decision on Presidential reference regarding Senate Election has opened a floodgate to analyze it by lawyers and other concerned as per their understanding of law although it is simple and clear having no ambiguity.

Hashmat Habib President Tehreek-e-Tahaffuz-e-Adlia said in the beginning we had expressed that the reference in question will be wastage of time as Senate Election cannot be held with show of hands. The Parliament is empowered to amend it with two-third majority. He said the responsibility of Election Commission has been pointed out by Supreme Court as a matter of precaution but same does not change the legal and constitutional binding.

The veteran lawyer said the Election of Senate is a ‘filthy’ game as held on proportionate system like Election of Pakistan Bar Council Members. Either this system be changed by direct Election or modified through rotation of Provincial Assembly Members in equal number for a fix period otherwise neither corruption can be checked nor corrupt practice be stopped. Horse-trading will remain even in worst condition, he added.

Hashmat Habib commenting the judgment in positive way said in clear words as per Article 226 of the constitution the election to the Senate of the Pakistan are secret while five other points is reminder in terms of article 218 (3), 220 with supporting law with clear finding that Election Commission has absolute power to conduct the Senate Election maintaining the secrecy although the secrecy of ballot has not to be implemented in the ideal and absolute sense but to be tempered by political considerations necessitated by the processes of the Election.

Further Election is to be conducted honestly, justly fairly and in accordance with law and that corrupt practices are guarded against. Justice Yahya Afridi categorically stated that reference is returned unanswered as it is not a question of law, the senior lawyer added.

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