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LHC queries whether Punjab crisis is over after Elahi’s trust vote

The Lahore High Court (LHC) questioned on Thursday whether the crisis in Punjab was now over given that Chief Minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi “completed the floor test” in the provincial legislature on orders from Governor Balighur Rehman.

Hours after Elahi, in a late-night tumultuous Punjab Assembly session on Thursday, managed to win the trust of 186 members, a larger bench — which is considering a case filed by the CM contesting Rehman’s order to de-notify him as the province’s chief executive – questioned this.

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To thwart the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly by ousted premier Imran Khan, the Punjab governor de-notified Elahi of his position as the largest province’s chief minister last month.

The court had stated on Thursday that a chief minister should always have the support of the majority of members of the house and had granted Elahi another day as CM.

The attorney general asked the court to incorporate the voting record in the arguments as the hearing got underway today. He said, “The governor won’t have any issues with that.”

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Justice Abid Aziz Shaikh questioned, “What do you have to say about Elahi taking the vote of confidence.”

In addition, Justice Asim Hafeez enquired as to what would happen if the governor sent out another notification.

The AG said, “There wouldn’t be a need for that after the assembly floor [established it was in Elahi’s favour].”

Justice Shaikh questioned, does this suggest that the subject has been resolved at this point since the floor test has been completed?

Elahi’s attorney, Barrister Ali Zafar, stated that his client had complied with the governor’s initial directive, which was to conduct a vote of confidence. It is now necessary to revoke his second notification of the de-notification.

Justice Hafeez responded by asserting that Elahi had done so by Article 137 of the Constitution.

The hearing was later postponed till 12:30 p.m.


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