LHC full bench to hear pleas over Imran's disqualification.

LAHORE -- Lahore High Court Chief Justice Muhammad Ameer Bhatti has constituted a full bench to decide two identical petitions concerning PTI Chairman Imran Khan's disqualification by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).

Justice Bhatti will himself head the three-judge bench with Justice Abid Aziz Sheikh and Justice Sajid Mahmood Sethi as its members. The full bench will hear the pleas on the availability of Justice Sethi at the principal seat in Lahore. Justice Sethi is presently performing judicial work at Multan seat.

On Nov 11, Justice Sethi had proposed constitution of a larger bench on the petitions.

The first petition filed by Advocate Mohammad Afaq said the ECP had disqualified the former prime minister and de-seated him from Mianwali's NA-95 constituency on charges of corrupt practices. Therefore, as per the Representation of Peoples Act 1976 and the Political Parties Order 2002, the office-bearers of a political party must meet the standards provided in Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution.

He argued that Mr Khan was violating the laws by continuing to head the PTI, a party registered with the ECP, and that a person disqualified under Article 63 was not entitled to become or stay an office-bearer of a political party.

The petitioner asked the court to order the ECP to remove Mr Khan as head of the PTI and direct the party to nominate a new chief.

In the second petition, which is against Mr Khan's...

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