This all has been done just to accommodate blue-eyed persons while violating the constitutional rights
While challenging an order of the delimitation authority, The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) has urged the Islamabad High Court to issue directions for conducting fresh delimitation of union councils in the capital.
Petitioner Saifullah Sarwar Khan Nyazee, PTI’s additional central organiser, has requested the court to set aside the delimitation orders from October 10, claiming it was against the law.
He has cited the Election Commission Islamabad, delimitation authority of the Islamabad Capital Territory and district election commissioner and delimitation officer Chaudhry Aleem Shahab as respondents.
The petition accuses the delimitation officer of putting forward the worst example of nepotism, favouritism and gerrymandering in clear violation of Section 7 of the Islamabad Capital Territory Local Government Act 2015 to giving undue advantage to the ruling party in the federation, namely Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.
According to section 7 of the act, the population of union councils shall be uniform, he said, adding that at present, there were some union councils with less than 5,000 voters, while others had over 5,000 voters.
The authority has ignored the fact that funds would be distributed on equal basis between the union councils, he stated. In addition, some areas have no nexus, as the localities are at distances of two to three kilometres from each other, he added.
“This all has been done just to accommodate blue-eyed persons while violating the constitutional rights,” he stated.
According to the 1998 national census, 65 per cent of the population of Islamabad resides in urban areas, while 35 per cent live in rural areas, but the delimitation officer has altogether ignored the census, he said. “There are 17 union councils in urban areas and 33 union councils in rural areas,” he said while referring to the delimitation notification.
The delimitation officer has delimited the union councils discrimination and has tried to give an edge to the ruling party over the all other in the local government elections, he alleged.
He also said that conducting a census is a mandatory provision of the constitution which has not yet been met. He argued that censuses was important for calculating the actual population and that elections could only be held in its true letter and spirit and the people would properly be represented.
Nyazee had previously filed an objection petition on the delimitation of union councils before the delimitation authority, which was dismissed on October 10.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 17th, 2015.