KP interim CM’s appointment challenged at PHC

Justice (retd) Arshad Hussain Shah (left) takes oath as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s interim chief minister on November 12, 2023. — X/@IsfPeshawar4
  • Petitioner says appointment violates provisions of Constitution.
  • Plea asks court to declare appointment null and void. 
  • “Caretaker govt failed to perform its constitutional obligations.”

PESHAWAR: A lawyer moved the Peshawar High Court (PHC) against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s interim Chief Minister Justice (retd) Arshad Hussain Shah’s appointment, saying it was  “in violation of the provisions of the Constitution”, The News reported Wednesday. 

The development came a day after Shah was sworn in as the caretaker chief minister after his predecessor Mohammad Azam Khan passed away after a brief illness. 

The petitioner, Advocate Tajammul Hussain Shah, filed the petition through his lawyers Wali Khan Afridi and Shah Faisal. The caretaker chief minister, his cabinet, law secretary, federal government and advocate general were made respondents in the plea.

The petitioner told the court that Arshad was appointed as the caretaker chief minister on the second day of the death of Khan, requesting the court to declare the appointment null and void. 

He argued that the caretaker government had lost its credibility, adding that the petition that the appointment made was in violation of the set procedure laid down in the Constitution. He said the procedure mentioned in Articles 224 and 224-A of the Constitution was not followed while making the appointment.

The petitioner argued that the KP Assembly stood dissolved when making the appointment. He further said that Mahmood Khan was no longer the chief minister and Akram Khan Durrani the opposition leader so they were not the authorised persons for the consultation.

He said that the caretaker government was supposed to run the day-to-day affairs and facilitate the holding of a free, fair and transparent election. Still, it had failed to perform its constitutional obligations.

The caretaker government has overstepped its authority, it added. The petitioner believed that the caretaker government was following a political agenda and it could influence the conduct of the free, fair and transparent election.

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