An election tribunal rejected on Tuesday PML-N leader Pervaiz Rashid’s appeal against the rejection of his nomination papers by a returning officer.
The verdict was issued by a single-member bench of Justice Shahid Waheed after the arguments in the case had finished.
Rashid, who spoke to the media following the verdict, said his lawyers had suggested an appeal could be filed against the decision, but he was “not convinced”.
“Lawyers say it can be appealed, but I am not convinced. I may not move to seek justice for myself,” said the former senator. He added that he was expecting the tribunal to direct him to pay the dues in today’s verdict rather than his disqualification.
He also alleged that the Punjab House management refused to take payment from him once when he went to pay his dues.
Last week, the PML-N leader had challenged the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to reject his nomination papers for the upcoming Senate election.
In his appeal, Rashid stated that the returning officer of the ECP “unlawfully rejected the nomination papers,” adding that he was ready to deposit Rs9.5 million to the administration of the Punjab House as required by the ECP for the purpose but he did not receive the related bank details.
He had approached the tribunal a day after Rashid’s nomination papers had been rejected by the ECP on allegations that he had defaulted on payments that were to be made to the Punjab House.
The Punjab government had released a list of people in 2018 who had not cleared their bills for staying and taking meals at the Punjab House. Rashid was among those who were named in the list.
PTI MPA Zainab Omar had filed an objection against Rashid through her lawyer Rana Mudassar to the returning officer/provincial election commissioner in Lahore.
According to the list released by the Punjab government a couple of years ago, Rashid and several PML-N leaders, government officials and their relatives owed a total amount exceeding Rs60 million.
As per the list, Rashid owed a sum of Rs7.05 million of which Rs0.69 million was owed for his stay in 2011 from January to August and Rs6.4 million for his stay between June 2013 and May 2018. The list also mentioned the name of his daughter, Poonam Rashid, also a Senator, who owed Rs2.7 million.