[Daily Times 23 April, 2019]

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Monday approved for hearing a petition seeking ban on Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P). A three-member bench of the election commission headed by Chief Election Commissioner Justice (r) Sardar Raza Khan heard the petition.

Petitioner Muhammad Ismail pleaded to the election commission that the MQM-P is involved in money laundering, adding that a huge amount was transferred to the party founder in London from Pakistan. The petitioner claimed that the MQM-P sent 180,000 British pounds to London in year 2012 and also didn’t declare the amount in its annual returns. The petitioner pleaded to the commission to impose a ban on the party over concealing the facts.

The election commission approved the petition for hearing and issued notices to MQM-P leaders Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Farooq Sattar, Mayor Karachi Wasim Akhtar, Kunwar Naveed Jameel and Arshad Vohra.

The bench adjourned the hearing till May 2. It is pertinent to mention here that the Sindh High Court (SHC) had dismissed a petition in January 2018 seeking ban on the party and disqualification of its legislators following the party founder’s speech against the state institutions on August 22, 2016.