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Why the 5 member Bench used ROPA to disqualify Nawaz?

Syed Haider Raza Mehdi

Here's my view.

I think the Judges have given a historical judgement which will destroy the sleep of the corrupt for generations because it will now be used as a legal precedent for similar cases of misrepresenting assets.

Since the judgement I spoke to a few lawyers, two retired judges, a serving high court judge and a former member of the election commission.

The upshot is as follows.

The case addresses a legal clause around ROPA (Representation of Public office act on corrupt practices) and the filing of the return of personal assets by aspirants to legislature seats alongwith their nomination papers to the election commission.

This was never taken seriously and people would file them.  But rarely was a person disqualified at the time of submission because the EC didn't / probably still doesn't, had and have the time or resources to scrutinize these returns.

Neither were these details actively pursued, especially if you happened to belong to a ruling group.

But now with this judgement, misrepresenting assets under ROPA has become a lethal weapon in unseating and disqualifying candidates or later even after being elected.

Henceforth it has the potential of being used extensively by candidates against each other and an independant and powerful and fully resourced Election Commission.

And from what one hears, this judgement may prove to be the death knell of the corrupt vying for public office.

This will hugely impact potential candidates and their candidatures, because a vast number hold assets they don't disclose.

This is why it has huge implications.

And these Lordships knew exactly what they were doing when they used this to disqualify Nawaz Sharif!

And, from the evidence on hand, it's a near guarantee that he and his children and Ishaq Dar will get their just desserts at the end of their trials.

Most likely a criminal conviction by the accountability trial courts, seizure of assets and a fairly decent long term in jail.

And that is why he's so dangerous now with all his talk of "Nazriyathi" etc.

He knows there's only only place in a grave and he doesn't hold the better cards.

Therefore he will attempt to create chaos within the country to save himself and his children from certain conviction.

Perhaps even asking his friends across the border to do something foolhardy.

A desperate man is capable of anything. And Nawaz is desperate.

- Haider Mehdi

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