The Election Commission of Pakistan , is an independent, autonomous, and constitutionally established federal institution responsible with the function of administrating the general electoral process in Pakistan.
The commission supervises and oversees fair and impartial general election process all over the country at regular consecutive five intervals as per the principles enlightened by the Constitution of Pakistan.
The Chief Election Commissioner is the authority and the appointed chair of the Election Commission of Pakistan— an institution constitutionally empowered to conduct free and fair elections to the national and provincial legislatures.
Justice (R) Rana Bhagwandas has declined to become the CEC because the Election Commission, according to him, is not autonomous and independent.
Senior Senator Raza Rabbani; who had been tasked to convince Das of assuming charge of the head of the election body following an apparent consensus between the government and main opposition party Pakistan Peoplel’s Party(PPP) over his name, met with the senior former judge to discuss the CEC post.
Das, however, rejected his nomination for the post.
Rana Bhagwandas was born on 20 December 1942 into a Hindu Sindhi Rajput family in Naseerabad, Larkana District (now Qambar Shahdadkot District) in Sindh. He studied law and received a Masters degree in Islamic studies. He joined the bar in 1965 and after two years of practising law with Abdul Ghafoor Bhurgri, an eminent lawyer of Larkana, joined the Pakistani Judicial System in 1967. Later, he became a sessions judge, and subsequently, a judge of the Sindh High Court. He is not a fan of cricket, but remains a supporter of the Pakistan cricket team.
Rana Bhagwandas was promoted to the Sindh High Court in 1994. In 1999, his appointment to the superior judiciary was challenged by a constitutional petition (no. 1069/1999) against the Government of Pakistan and Judge Bhagwandas. The petition demanded that the judicial bench consisting of Judge Bhagwandas should be declared unconstitutional because of Bhagwandas’ religion, claiming that only Muslims can be appointed to the superior judiciary. The petition was rejected, and the petitioner was condemned by other judges of the high court and by a significant number of lawyers.
In 2000, he joined the Supreme Court of Pakistan after taking an oath of allegiance to Pervez Musharraf’s administration under the PCO. Justice Bhagwandas took strong note of a kidnapping case involving a girl in North-West Frontier Province forced to be a prostitute for four years. A believer in the sanctity of the Constitution of Pakistan and its legal system, Bhagwandas maintains that the law is equal for all religious communities in Pakistan. While staunchly defending Pakistan’s society and legal system against charges of bias and suppression of minorities, Bhagwandas is also a vocal opponent of the practice of honour killings of women in the provincial rural areas.
For the 2006–2007 judicial year, Justice Bhagwandas was a member of the second bench of justices which was also home to Justice Nasir ul-Mulk and Justice Syed Jamshed Ali.
On 28 September 2007, in a 6–3 vote the court, Judge Rana Bhagwandas presiding, ruled: “These petitions are held to be non-maintainable but he was among the three dissenting judges who thought that Gen. Musharraf should relinquish army chief’s post.” The judgment removed obstacles to Pervez Musharraf’s election bid but gave Bhagwandas more honour and respect in the country.
Justice Bhagwandas refused to take oath under the PCO which was issued by then President of Pakistan General Musharraf and was among the 60 judges sacked on 3 November 2007. He retired in December 2007 and was reinstated in retired status.
Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) on Monday approached Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) seeking allotment of an election symbols for the party for next general elections in the country, a private news channel reported.
According to the report, PAT has requested to be allotted a symbol of Tractor, Star or Hockey, in the application submitted to ECP.
The party has also submitted its asset details, claiming assets worth Rs1.4 million.
PAT chief Dr. Tahir-ul-Qadri announced in October that his party would contest next general elections as a political party.
Reacting to the charges of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan regarding the massive riggings in May 11 general polls, Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) summoned an important meeting today (Tuesday) to discuss Khan’s accusations.
According to the ECP, all members of the commission and secretary ECP will attend the meeting.
The sources said the election commission would take stock of prevalent political scenario and the charges of riggings in the previous vote.