Strict Compliance in Election Nomination Process


leafless tree on brown grass field under blue sky during daytime
leafless tree on brown grass field under blue sky during daytime

In a recent judgment, the Lahore High Court’s Appellate Tribunal dismissed Election Appeals No. 29 and 30 of 2024, both filed by Raja Safeer Akbar. These appeals challenged the rejection of his nomination papers for the upcoming National Assembly and Provincial Assembly elections. This decision highlights the critical importance of adherence to procedural requirements in the electoral process.

Key Areas:

Appellant’s Argument: The appellant contended that his nomination papers were improperly rejected. He argued that all necessary details were provided and that his attorney was fully authorized to sign and submit the papers on his behalf. The appellant’s counsel claimed the rejection was contrary to Section 62 of the Election Act, 2017.

Court's Analysis: The court examined the requirements under Section 60(2) of the Election Act, 2017, which mandates that nomination papers must be personally signed by the candidate. The court referenced the Supreme Court’s interpretation in "Province of Punjab vs. Murree Brewery Company Limited" (2021 SCMR 305), emphasizing that the use of the word "shall" indicates a mandatory provision.

Legal Precedents: The court underscored the principle that legal requirements must be strictly followed, as highlighted in "Muhammad Akram vs. Mst. Zainab Bibi" (2007 SCMR 1086), which states that failure to perform legal actions in the prescribed manner renders them null and void.

Court’s Opinion: The court found that appellant’s nomination papers were not signed by him, but by his attorney, contrary to the explicit requirements of the Election Act, 2017. The court dismissed the argument that an authorized person could sign the papers, clarifying that such authorization only applies to submission, not signing. Judge Ch. Abdul Aziz stated that adherence to the prescribed legal process is essential and upheld the Returning Officers' decisions to reject the nomination papers.

Conclusion: The appeals were dismissed, reinforcing the importance of personal compliance with nomination requirements in the electoral process.

Contact Us:

For those facing similar legal challenges or seeking expert advice on election laws and procedural compliance, AUJ LAWYERS LLP offers comprehensive legal services. Our firm is dedicated to ensuring your legal needs are met with precision and expertise. Contact us today for professional legal assistance.

We are here to help

Talk to our lawyers today. We tailor our services around your legal needs so that we can reach the desired outcome together.