ECP turns down SIC plea seeking allocation of reserved seats in assemblies

ECP turns down SIC plea seeking allocation of reserved seats in assemblies

ECP turns down SIC plea seeking allocation of reserved seats in assemblies

ECP turns down SIC plea seeking allocation of reserved seats in assemblies

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ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has dismissed the petition from the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) regarding the allocation of reserved seats, which they sought after purportedly merging with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for this specific purpose.

The SIC had requested the ECP to assign seats based on the inclusion of candidates supported by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) within their party. This request, presented by SIC Chairman Sahibzada Hamid Raza through a PTI representative, was submitted to the electoral watchdog.

Following thorough deliberation of arguments from all parties involved, the commission had deferred its decision until Wednesday, just before the inaugural session of the National Assembly.

PTI candidates participated in the elections as independents after the Supreme Court deemed their intra-party polls “unconstitutional” and revoked their claim to the electoral symbol of the ‘bat’.

According to the Constitution, reserved seats are allocated to political parties based on the number of their representatives elected to general seats. The ECP had already received priority lists of candidates from parties before the February 8 elections for this purpose.

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This year’s situation differs from previous elections as the largest group of lawmakers comprises independents, who are ineligible for reserved seats.

A total of 346 reserved seats for women exist – 60 in the National Assembly and 66, 29, 26, and 11 in the provincial legislatures of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), and Balochistan, respectively.

Similarly, the lower house has 10 reserved seats for minorities, while Punjab, Sindh, and Balochistan assemblies have eight, nine, and three reserved seats for minorities, respectively.

In its correspondence, the Sunni Ittehad Council stated that 86 independent National Assembly candidates had joined their party, along with 107 independents from the Punjab Assembly, 90 from the K-P Assembly, and nine independent members from the Sindh Assembly, now allied with the SIC.

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